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KBO encounters
nprev
post Jul 2 2014, 03:06 AM
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John, congratulations to you, Alan, and the team. We knew you'd do it, but it sure is a relief to have targets in sight! smile.gif


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Bjorn Jonsson
post Jul 2 2014, 11:43 AM
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Awesome news - congratulations.
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algorithm
post Jul 2 2014, 05:48 PM
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Agreed, fantastic news for what could be an even more rewarding voyage. In my line of work it's the three Ps', preparation, preparation, preparation, this would apply here also, but with perseverance, perseverance, perseverance, again, well done and really looking forward to this one, especially perhaps some of the images to come down! smile.gif
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Jaro_in_Montreal
post Jul 2 2014, 07:33 PM
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QUOTE (ngunn @ Jul 1 2014, 09:31 PM) *
I bet. Two is very low number statistics so this represents a dangerous moment passed, but not really a guarantee of success with the full search. Now it's less about luck and more about what's out there. Here's hoping . .

My thoughts exactly.

Fabulous news nevertheless.

Best wishes on the full-scope search ! (....keep us posted pls!)
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Paolo
post Mar 17 2015, 08:28 PM
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so, the two candidate KBOs now have preliminary designations courtesy of the Minor Planet Center: PT1 is now known as 2014 MU69 and PT3 is 2014 PN70.
you can find orbital elements in this Minor Planet Electronic Circular. search for K14M69U and K14P70N. both are low inclination and small eccentricity "cold" KBOs orbiting near 44 AUs. I am surprised by the small eccentricity of 2014 MU69: only 0.05
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Holder of the Tw...
post Jul 15 2015, 03:13 AM
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Now that New Horizons appears to be safely beyond Pluto, we can begin anticipating the KBO encounter in 2019 with more confidence. The preferred target right now seems to be 2014 MU69,
although 2014 PN70 is still in the running. The latter is somewhat larger (or at least brighter) but will require more fuel. I read in an interview with Alan Stern that he mentioned a decision as to which one will be made in August.
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kap
post Jul 15 2015, 04:34 AM
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QUOTE (Holder of the Two Leashes @ Jul 14 2015, 08:13 PM) *
Now that New Horizons appears to be safely beyond Pluto, we can begin anticipating the KBO encounter in 2019 with more confidence. The preferred target right now seems to be 2014 MU69,
although 2014 PN70 is still in the running. The latter is somewhat larger (or at least brighter) but will require more fuel. I read in an interview with Alan Stern that he mentioned a decision as to which one will be made in August.


Do you have any idea why the fuel usage is a concern? Is there any possibility of additional targets after the second encounter?

-kap
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Holder of the Tw...
post Jul 15 2015, 05:17 AM
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Probably not so much the hope of a second KBO as simple caution at this point, although there might be some people hoping and still holding out for a second iceball. Just a guess, but I think the main concern is that targeting 2014 PN70 would leave NH with substantially less remaining fuel reserve. With four years to go they may want a better margin for just-in-case whatever. This would be a good question for someone actually on the team.
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Explorer1
post Jul 15 2015, 05:58 AM
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I recall from other missions that it is standard to just 'burn to depletion' and empty the fuel tanks to get good estimates for how much was in them, as an engineering exercise. Maybe after a flyby it would be best to use the rest to just get as close as possible to a second KBO? Obviously this is early speculation... wink.gif
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MahFL
post Jul 15 2015, 11:26 AM
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QUOTE (kap @ Jul 15 2015, 04:34 AM) *
Do you have any idea why the fuel usage is a concern? Is there any possibility of additional targets after the second encounter?

-kap


They want to operate the spacecraft for years and years after the KBO encounter, you need thruster fuel to do that, so that is why thruster fuel is always a concern.
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abalone
post Jul 15 2015, 11:32 AM
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Just out of interest, what delta V do each of the candidates need compared to the delta V still in the tank? or What is NH's the cone of reachability and how close is each to the edge?

Have any followup observations been done or are planed by Hubble to identify any further targets now that the search area is smaller?
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Paolo
post Jul 15 2015, 12:41 PM
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QUOTE (abalone @ Jul 15 2015, 01:32 PM) *
Just out of interest, what delta V do each of the candidates need compared to the delta V still in the tank?


this paper should answer most of your questions:
http://www.hou.usra.edu/meetings/lpsc2015/pdf/1301.pdf
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abalone
post Jul 15 2015, 12:59 PM
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QUOTE (Paolo @ Jul 15 2015, 11:41 PM) *
this paper should answer most of your questions:
http://www.hou.usra.edu/meetings/lpsc2015/pdf/1301.pdf

Thanx
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climber
post Jul 15 2015, 06:50 PM
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Another answer, 100m delta V: https://twitter.com/jeff_foust/status/621381270640197637


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abalone
post Jul 16 2015, 12:46 PM
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QUOTE (climber @ Jul 16 2015, 04:50 AM) *
Another answer, 100m delta V:

That's a bit confusing 100m/s, what does that include?
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