Mission Manager Update: Kepler Remains Stable as Health Check Continues

149 views Leave a comment


The Kepler booster stays fast as a routine of returning it to scholarship continues. The means of a anomaly, initial reported on Apr 8, stays underneath investigation.

Since Sunday morning a booster has remained safely “parked” in a fast forked pattern called Point Rest State. In this state, fuel use stays low and a communication integrate to Earth is good. As of Tuesday, goal operations engineers had downlinked all a required information from Kepler to triage a conditions and devise a stairs toward recovery.

The liberation to scholarship began with a consummate comment of a data, that took a integrate days, after that a group had schooled all they could about a state of a booster from a data. It was afterwards time to spin behind on and exam a components deemed low-risk to booster health. Testing starts on a Kepler booster simulator during a moody formulation core during Ball Aerospace in Boulder, Colorado. With a ground-based make-believe a success, we were prepared to control a tests on Kepler, 75 million miles away. The engineers sent a instructions, along with commands for a booster to strengthen itself and enter a protected handling mode if there was a problem, and waited for a booster to news back.

The booster returned a response that is a homogeneous of ‘so far, so good.’ It did not knowledge any faults from switching on a components, and all a information advise a components are operative normally. The booster is another step closer to returning to systematic observations for the K2 mission.

The photometer – Kepler’s camera – and a plain state recorder are powered on. The subsystem interface box, that is a interface between a booster sensors and a categorical computer, was usually quickly powered on for an initial assessment, though should be behind online early subsequent week. The group will continue recuperating a components, as they are deemed protected and low-risk to a spacecraft.

Over a weekend, NASA’s Deep Space Network (DSN) will sojourn in hit with a booster while a group gets some much-needed rest. To watch a worldwide array of antennae promulgate with a spacecraft, tune-in to DSN Now.

The liberation started solemnly and carefully, as we primarily merely attempted to know a conditions and redeem a systems slightest approaching to have been a cause. Over a final day and a half, we’ve begun to spin a corner, by powering on some-more think components. With only one some-more to go, we design that we will shortly be on a home widen and picking adult speed towards returning to normal scholarship operations.



4/11, Update 1: Kepler Recovered from Emergency and Stable

Mission operations engineers have successfully recovered a Kepler booster from Emergency Mode (EM). On Sunday morning, a booster reached a fast state with a communication receiver forked toward Earth, enabling telemetry and chronological eventuality information to be downloaded to a ground. The booster is handling in a lowest fuel-burn mode.

The goal has cancelled the booster emergency, returning the Deep Space Network ground communications to normal scheduling.

Once information is on a ground, a group will entirely consider all on house systems to safeguard a booster is healthy adequate to lapse to scholarship mode and start the K2 mission’s microlensing watching campaign, called Campaign 9. This checkout is approaching to continue by a week.

Earth-based observatories participating in Campaign 9 will continue to make observations as Kepler’s health check continues. The K2 watching eventuality for Campaign 9 will finish on Jul 1, when a galactic core is no longer in perspective from a vantage indicate of a spacecraft.

K2’s prior scholarship debate resolved on Mar 23. After information was downlinked to a ground, a booster was placed in what is termed Point Rest State (PRS). While in PRS, a booster receiver is forked toward Earth and it operates in a fuel-efficient mode, with a greeting wheels during rest.

The Emergency Mode began approximately 14 hours before a designed scheme to asian a booster toward a core of a Milky Way for Campaign 9. The group has therefore ruled out a scheme and a greeting wheels as probable causes of a EM event. An review into what caused the eventuality will be followed in parallel, with a priority on returning a booster to scholarship operations.

The supernatural EM eventuality is a initial that a Kepler booster has encountered during a 7 years in space. Mission operations during NASA’s Ames Research Center in California’s Silicon Valley, Ball Aerospace and a Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics at a University of Colorado in Boulder sojourn vigilant.

It was a discerning response and integrity of a engineers via a weekend that led to a recovery. We are deeply elegant of their efforts, and for a escape of support from a mission’s fans and supporters from around a world.  We also commend a extensive support from NASA’s Deep Space Network, managed by a Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, and to NASA’s other missions that surrendered their scheduled telemetry links in sequence to yield us with a resources indispensable to strengthen a Kepler spacecraft.


April 8, Original Report: Kepler in Emergency Mode

During a scheduled hit on Thursday, Apr 7, goal operations engineers detected that a Kepler booster was in Emergency Mode (EM). EM is a lowest operational mode and is fuel intensive. Recovering from EM is a team’s priority during this time.

The goal has announced a booster emergency, that provides priority entrance to ground-based communications during a agency’s Deep Space Network.

Initial indications are that Kepler entered EM approximately 36 hours ago, before goal operations began a scheme to asian a booster to indicate toward a core of a Milky Way for the K2 mission’s microlensing watching campaign.

The booster is scarcely 75 million miles from Earth, creation a communication slow. Even during a speed of light, it takes 13 mins for a vigilance to transport to a booster and back.

The final unchanging hit with a booster was on April. 4.  The booster was in good health and handling as expected.

Kepler finished a primary goal in 2012, detecting scarcely 5,000 exoplanets, of which, some-more than 1,000 have been confirmed. In 2014 a Kepler booster began a new goal called K2. In this extended mission, K2 continues a hunt for exoplanets while introducing new investigate opportunities to investigate immature stars, supernovae, and many other astronomical objects.

Source: NASA