A new mission for Akatsuki, and status updates for Hayabusa 2 and Chang'e
Last week, JAXA announced a new set of science goals for the modified mission :. When flying further away from Venus, or about 10 times the radius of Venus from the planet, the Akatsuki will continuously observe Venus as a whole to understand its... When flying closer to Venus, or less than 10 times the radius of Venus, the orbiter will conduct close-up observations to clarify cloud convection, the distribution of minute undulatory motions and their changes. The nature of elliptical orbits is that the spacecraft spends much more of its time very far from Venus than it will spend close up. Almost all of Akatsuki's activity is described in item 1: continuous observations of the clouds. Akatsuki will also observe to capture the atmospheric layer structure and its changes by emitting radio waves that penetrate the atmosphere of Venus and receiving them on the ground. When Akatsuki comes closest to Venus, it will observe the layer structure of clouds and the atmosphere from a lateral...
New Horizons: Awaiting the data
- The orbit control this time aims at correcting AKATSUKI's orbit to one that is advantageous to its observations after being injected into the Venus orbit. We will use four attitude control engines on the upper part of the explorer this time to take
- Eventually, every mission's data sets -- from all the instruments, not just the cameras -- get formally released into NASA's Planetary Data System (for best results, start with the Rings or Imaging or Geosciences nodes) and/or ESA's Planetary Science
- At the same time, we were taking all the data we wanted to get down to the ground but wanted to save, and were compressing it into a single location on the [solid-state] data recorder. We were doing multiple things on the spacecraft at the same time