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Technology - Deep Space Network

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These two 34-meter antennas in an array with two others will also be receiving data from the Deep Impact spacecraft.
These two 34-meter antennas in an array with two others will also be receiving data from the Deep Impact spacecraft.

Members of our Deep Impact project visited the Deep Space Network at Goldstone in California. There they craned their necks up at one of the 70-meter antennas that will receive the data from the moment of impact with Comet Tempel 1 and the period immediately following.

This 70-meter antenna will receive data from the Deep Impact spacecraft. The person on the crane gives you an idea of the size of this antenna.
This 70-meter antenna will receive data from the Deep Impact spacecraft. The person on the crane gives you an idea of the size of this antenna.

Because of the volume of data and its importance at that exact time, overlapping coverage is considered necessary from two of the DSN's three 70-meter structures around the world. Two of the team are pictured in front of two of the three 34-meter beam waveguide antennas. These three structures will be combined with another 34-meter high efficiency antenna and they will also collect data at the time of impact. Dedicated members of the DSN have been thinking about this one for a long time, as they will be responsible for bringing the Deep Impact data safely to Earth and to the Science team. The Deep Space Network is one part of the Deep Impact community.

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Last Updated: 28 Jun 2010