Дата: 18 февраля 1998 (1998-02-18)
От: Alexander Bondugin
Тема: Galileo Update - February 17, 1998
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JET PROPULSION LABORATORY
CALIFORNIA INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY
NATIONAL AERONAUTICS AND SPACE ADMINISTRATION
PASADENA, CALIF. 91109. TELEPHONE (818) 354-5011
Galileo Europa Mission Status
February 17, 1998
NASA's Galileo spacecraft successfully flew over Europa at
an altitude of 3,552 kilometers (2,207 miles) on Tues., Feb. 10.
Because of the approaching solar conjunction, the spacecraft
gathered some radio science data, but no other science
information. During solar conjunction, the Sun passes between
Earth and the spacecraft, hindering communication for a period of
about 2-1/2 weeks. Therefore, the spacecraft will not transmit
science data to Earth until the conjunction period ends.
During the Feb. 10 flyby, the spacecraft did transmit to
Earth an observation taken during its closest-ever Europa flyby,
which occurred on Dec. 16. During that encounter, Galileo passed
above Europa's icy surface at an altitude of only 200 kilometers
(124 miles). The latest observation returned to Earth was
designed to help scientists learn more about the composition of
an area of Europa characterized by the Pwyll crater.
The Galileo flight team adjusted the spacecraft's flight
path on Sat., Feb. 7, to prepare for the Feb. 10 Europa flyby.
Another flight path adjustment was made on Fri., Feb. 13 to make
sure Galileo is on track for its next Europa encounter, scheduled
for March 29. Both maneuvers were successful, even though
special measures were utilized to counteract the effects of a
gyroscope anomaly which has occurred twice since the Dec. 16
Europa flyby. Engineers believe solid state switches in one of
the gyro units may be reacting to the effects of radiation from
Jupiter, but they continue their analysis of the situation.
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