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Sedna
As most of us know, Dawn is set for launch on June, 20th, 2007. A disc is gonna be sent in the spacecraft, with names of many people around the world recorded inside. Does anybody know when is the disc is gonna be put into the spacecraft, and the most realistic tentative date of launch for the mission? Thanks a lot.
mars loon
QUOTE (Sedna @ Sep 30 2006, 12:16 AM) *
Does anybody know when is the disc is gonna be put into the spacecraft, and the most realistic tentative date of launch for the mission? Thanks a lot.


The deadline for placing your name on the disk is 4 November 2006

You may "Send your name to the Asteroid Belt" at the JPL DAWN website via this online link:

http://www.dawn-mission.org/DawnCommunity/...d/nameEntry.asp

The launch is currently set for 20 June 2007

ken
punkboi
QUOTE (mars loon @ Oct 3 2006, 07:37 AM) *
The deadline for placing your name on the disk is 4 November 2006

You may "Send your name to the Asteroid Belt" at the JPL DAWN website via this online link:

http://www.dawn-mission.org/DawnCommunity/...d/nameEntry.asp

The launch is currently set for 20 June 2007

ken


Also... The names are being put on a microchip, FYI... I wonder if that chip will be specially made to protect it from cosmic radiation. Kinda sucks if those names last for only a few hundred years, instead of millions of years like the gold records on the Voyager probes smile.gif
JRehling
QUOTE (punkboi @ Oct 5 2006, 10:28 AM) *
Also... The names are being put on a microchip, FYI... I wonder if that chip will be specially made to protect it from cosmic radiation. Kinda sucks if those names last for only a few hundred years, instead of millions of years like the gold records on the Voyager probes smile.gif


I'll be sure to roll over in my grave when the copy of my name in the asteroid belt loses a letter.
lyford
"We came in pe2334 fo% a&& #######mankind." smile.gif
Bart
I noticed in the wikipedia entry on Pallas ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2_Pallas ) that in the section titled "Observations" it says,

QUOTE
Pallas has not yet been visited by a spacecraft, but if the Dawn probe is successful in studying 1 Ceres and 4 Vesta, its mission may be extended to Pallas.

I'm curious about the veracity of that statement. Has somebody actually analyzed this possibility, will Dawn have enough fuel left over, and how long would it take anyway to get from Ceres to Pallas with ion drives?

Bart
Stephen
QUOTE (Bart @ Oct 5 2006, 11:17 PM) *
I noticed in the wikipedia entry on Pallas ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2_Pallas ) that in the section titled "Observations" it says,
I'm curious about the veracity of that statement. Has somebody actually analyzed this possibility, will Dawn have enough fuel left over, and how long would it take anyway to get from Ceres to Pallas with ion drives?

This doesn't exactly answer your question, but on the second page of this ACM conference paper about Dawn the authors mention that Pallas although it "resides in the same region of the asteroid belt as Ceres" is "much more difficult to reach". They go to say that "measurements at Pallas" would nevertheless be "highly desirable" but concede that "exploring Vesta and Ceres may be sufficient to bracket the properties of large 'minor' planets".

My guess as to the reason Pallas is regarded as "much more difficult to reach" is it's orbital inclination, which is >30 degrees. By contrast Ceres and Vesta are about 10.5 & 7 degrees respectively.

======
Stephen
punkboi
QUOTE (JRehling @ Oct 5 2006, 02:14 PM) *
I'll be sure to roll over in my grave when the copy of my name in the asteroid belt loses a letter.


Yep, the issue is that important... Even moreso than talking about putting an RTG on the MSL or restoring space science funding tongue.gif
Myran
In reply to Bart:
If they actually will try to visit Pallas I think they rather will attempt to do a flyby when the asteroid passes near the plane of the ecliptic, rather than actually to keep station with Pallas.

But I can be wrong, the ion engine can change course of the spacecraft to a large degree when given time in this case it needs to be nudged into an inclination of 34,8 degrees. Since the ion engine have very little actual power it will take a lot of time however, we need to think in a timeframe of years.
Bart
Myran: That actually makes a lot of sense. Given the similarity in the semi-major axes of the two asteroids, this would only take a modest delta-V. Even getting just a flyby of Pallas would be a major bonus.

I was playing around with the asteroid orbit tools at http://neo.jpl.nasa.gov/orbits/ and it looks like the flyby would occur in the neighborhood of December 2018. There is an earlier opportunity at the descending node around March 2016, but I don't think that gives Dawn enough time to switch orbits.

I'm really excited about this mission! Only five years until Vesta orbit!

Bart
RNeuhaus
Fresh news about the Dawn's project status. A bit interesting detail: it is going to have a pair solar panels of close 9 meters each! Versus 4 meters each of MRO and 2 meters of VEX. It will carry about 425, kilograms of Xenon for ion propulsors, -- more than enough to allow it to travel to and orbit its targets ohmy.gif So heavy! Besides, it will carry 12 mini-propulsores based of hydrazine in two independent systems consisting of 6 ones as a backup. Each subsystem has about 45 kg of fuel hydrazine. On the other hand, it will carry as many electrical reaction wheels.

So redudant is the altitude control system. They have learned lessons from the missfortune of Hayabusa.



Main source comes from spacedaily.com :Dawn Spacecraft Assembly...

Dawn Mission Home Page
Rakhir
QUOTE (RNeuhaus @ Oct 10 2006, 05:11 PM) *
Fresh news about the Dawn's project status. A bit interesting detail: it is going to have a pair solar panels of close 9 meters each! Versus 4 meters each of MRO and 2 meters of VEX.

To complete the examples, each solar panel of Rosetta is 14-metres long (32 metres tip-to-tip).
AlexBlackwell
I just noticed that the latest issue (October 2006) of the Dawn's Early Light newsletter is online.
RNeuhaus
Additional details about Ceres


Now new images of its surface reveal a surprisingly diverse surface terrain, scientists say. Dark and bright spots in the images might be crater impacts, mineral deposits or the effects of space weathering, said Mr Carry.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/6037844.stm


The Keck results also support Ceres' suspected oblate shape, which scientists say could be the result of as much as 25% water ice in its mantle. If so, the amount may be greater than all the fresh water on Earth. Nasa reinstates Dawn mission "We think Ceres still contains pristine water from when the Solar System was formed," said Dr Dumas.


Planet with lots of water, hence a very cold dwarf planet which has not enough own internal heat to sublimate away the water. blink.gif

Rodolfo
PhilCo126
Looks like too many people want to send their name ...

huh.gif

http://www.dawn-mission.org/DawnCommunity/...d/nameEntry.asp
punkboi
QUOTE (PhilCo126 @ Nov 3 2006, 06:02 AM) *
Looks like too many people want to send their name ...

huh.gif

http://www.dawn-mission.org/DawnCommunity/...d/nameEntry.asp



About 360,000 names are flying onboard Dawn. Probably would've been a lot more had the mission not been stood down late last year. Not that 360,000 names aren't a lot, already tongue.gif
AlexBlackwell
Dawn Journal
Dr. Marc D. Rayman
December 28, 2006
http://dawn.jpl.nasa.gov/mission/journal_12_06.asp
Bart
Dr. Marc Rayman will be giving a public lecture on Dawn as part of JPL's von Karman Lecture Series on February 22/23.

See http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/events/lectures/feb07.cfm
Zvezdichko
Is there a scientific program for Mars during the Mars flyby?
punkboi
New journal:

http://www.dawn-mission.org/mission/journal_2_07.asp
nprev
Thanks, PB. Looks like the thermal/vac tests went extremely well, and it's shipping to the Cape this month or next.

Kind of concerned that they didn't get to run a full test on one of the xenon thrusters, though. I know it has three & only one will be used at a time, but sure would hate to see one of them subnominal right off the bat after launch... unsure.gif
dsmillman
What is the length of the launch window that opens on June 20?
What time does the launch window open each day and long is the launch window?
punkboi
In terms of launch period, I believe that Dawn has till October to lift off. It is misses that, the opportunity to reach Ceres from Vesta won't be possible for around 15 years
Jim from NSF.com
QUOTE (punkboi @ Mar 26 2007, 02:14 AM) *
In terms of launch window, I believe that Dawn has till October to lift off. It is misses that, the opportunity to reach Ceres from Vesta won't be possible for around 15 years


That is the launch period. Launch window is the time period each day that a mission can be launched
Jim from NSF.com
QUOTE (dsmillman @ Mar 25 2007, 02:35 PM) *
What is the length of the launch window that opens on June 20?
What time does the launch window open each day and long is the launch window?


One second launch windows (It is a Delta II). Launch time varies from 22:05 to 20:25 UTC over the whole launch period
BPCooper
When I asked one of the project scientists I was told the window was approximately 5:54pm to 6:20pm EDT June 20.

She seemed to think it was a long window, but I was skeptical since this is a planetary mission.

Jim...6:05pm June 20?
ugordan
QUOTE (Jim from NSF.com @ Mar 26 2007, 01:06 PM) *
One second launch windows (It is a Delta II).

Is the 1 second launch window a consequence of LV flexibility or simply a tight performance constraint?
Jim from NSF.com
QUOTE (BPCooper @ Mar 26 2007, 08:24 AM) *
When I asked one of the project scientists I was told the window was approximately 5:54pm to 6:20pm EDT June 20.

She seemed to think it was a long window, but I was skeptical since this is a planetary mission.

Jim...6:05pm June 20?


Yes. As of Dec 2006
Jim from NSF.com
QUOTE (ugordan @ Mar 26 2007, 08:43 AM) *
Is the 1 second launch window a consequence of LV flexibility or simply a tight performance constraint?


LV flexibility. Delta II can't yaw steer or do variable azimuths ( only 2 discrete ones per day)
BPCooper
The launch has been postponed to June 30 NET.

And as I had been told, there is in fact a launch window. It's about 20 mins long.
punkboi
QUOTE (BPCooper @ Mar 30 2007, 03:58 PM) *
The launch has been postponed to June 30 NET.

And as I had been told, there is in fact a launch window. It's about 20 mins long.


Do you know why the launch was postponed? Oh, and when the spacecraft is suppose to be shipped to KSC? I heard it's next month
BPCooper
It's arrival in FL has been pushed back, but I don't know why yet. I think it was to arrive late this month or early April.
punkboi
The new launch date has been confirmed on the Dawn website

Launch window for 6/30: 6:04:16 6:24:16 p.m. EDT

Status:

High voltage electronics reinstalled and leak checks completed
March 26 - 30, 2007

Successful completion of tests coordinating flow of information between the Dawn spacecraft and ground systems network
March 5 - 9, 2007
punkboi
Another update on the Dawn website...including why the launch has slipped to June 30th:

Completion of Additional Testing and New Launch Date
April 2 - 6, 2007

An acoustic test, in which powerful sound was directed at the spacecraft (similar to the noise of launch), was completed at the Naval Research Laboratory. This verified that the work to remove and reinstall the high voltage electronics assembly did not harm the spacecraft. To accommodate a change in the schedule for assembling the components of Dawn's Delta II launch vehicle, the launch date is shifted 10 days to June 30. The change will have no effect on mission objectives or science.
BPCooper
The correct launch window for the 30th is 5:13:15 p.m. - 5:33:15 p.m. EDT and it has been added to the KSC launch schedule.
elakdawalla
Are you planning to go, Ben? smile.gif

--Emily
BPCooper
I will be there :-) shooting. But hey, I live in the area.
ugordan
QUOTE (BPCooper @ Apr 6 2007, 08:33 PM) *
shooting
Did you just now admit you shoot the rockets on purpose? I'm sure NASA would like to have a few words with you regarding a certain 1997 Delta II explosion... biggrin.gif
nprev
Anybody know how Dawn's being shipped to the Cape? Curious if it'll be a C-5 or a C-17...would be proud to know if it was an aircraft I've worked on at some time or another! smile.gif
punkboi
Dawn Arrives in Florida - A Little After Dawn
April 10, 2007

--NASA News Release--

The Dawn spacecraft arrived at Astrotech Space Operations in Titusville, Fla., at 9 a.m. EDT today. Dawn, NASA's mission into the heart of the asteroid belt, is at the facility for final processing and launch operations. Dawn's launch period opens June 30.

"Dawn only has two more trips to make," said Dawn project manager Keyur Patel of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif. "One will be in mid-June when it makes the 15-mile journey from the processing facility to the launch pad. The second will be when Dawn rises to begin its eight-year, 3.2-billion-mile odyssey into the heart of the asteroid belt."

The Dawn spacecraft will employ ion propulsion to explore two of the asteroid belt's most intriguing and dissimilar occupants: asteroid Vesta and the dwarf planet Ceres.

Now that Dawn has arrived at Astrotech near NASA's Kennedy Space Center, final prelaunch processing will begin. Technicians will install the spacecraft's batteries, check out the control thrusters and test the spacecraft's instruments. In late April, Dawn's large solar arrays will be attached and then deployed for testing. In early May, a compatibility test will be performed with the Deep Space Network used for tracking and communications. Dawn will then be loaded with fuel to be used for spacecraft control during the mission. Finally, in mid-May, the spacecraft will undergo spin-balance testing. Dawn will then be mated to the upper stage booster and installed into a spacecraft transportation canister for the trip to Cape Canaveral Air Force Station. This is currently scheduled for June 19, when it will be mated to the Delta II rocket at Pad 17-B.

The rocket that will launch Dawn is a Delta II 7925-H manufactured by the United Launch Alliance; it is a heavier-lift model of the standard Delta II that uses larger solid rocket boosters. The first stage is scheduled to be erected on Pad 17-B in late May. Then the nine strap-on solid rocket boosters will be raised and attached. The second stage, which burns hypergolic propellants, will be hoisted atop the first stage in the first week of June. The fairing which surrounds the spacecraft will then be hoisted into the clean room of the mobile service tower.

Next, engineers will perform several tests of the Delta II. In mid-June, as a leak check, the first stage will be loaded with liquid oxygen during a simulated countdown. The next day, a simulated flight test will be performed, simulating the vehicle's post-liftoff flight events without fuel aboard. The electrical and mechanical systems of the entire Delta II will be exercised during this test. Once the Dawn payload is atop the launch vehicle, a final major test will be conducted: an integrated test of the Delta II and Dawn working together. This will be a combined minus and plus count, simulating all events as they will occur on launch day, but without propellants aboard the vehicle.

The NASA Launch Services Program at Kennedy Space Center and the United Launch Alliance are responsible for the launch of the Delta II.

The Dawn mission to Vesta and Ceres is managed by JPL, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, for NASA's Science Mission Directorate in Washington, D.C. The University of California Los Angeles is responsible for overall Dawn mission science. Other scientific partners include Los Alamos National Laboratory, New Mexico; German Aerospace Center, Berlin; Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research, Katlenburg, Germany; and Italian National Institute of Astrophysics, Palermo. Orbital Sciences Corporation of Dulles, Va., designed and built the Dawn spacecraft.

Additional information about Dawn is online at:

http://dawn.jpl.nasa.gov

Now installed on the spacecraft is the microchip bearing the names of 360,000 people:
punkboi
Images of Dawn at the Astrotech facility in Florida:



elakdawalla
Thanks, punkboi! Where'd you find these photos?

--Emily
punkboi
Kennedy Space Center website:

http://mediaarchive.ksc.nasa.gov/search.cfm

You have to type 'Dawn spacecraft' in the search engine to see the pics...since there probably won't be a devoted page to Dawn till after April 25 (when the AIM spacecraft launches and KSC coverage for that ends)
elakdawalla
Aha -- thank you.

What's funny is that you were much faster on this than the press folks I'd gotten an inquiry to about these images. smile.gif I knew they had to exist but couldn't find them.

--Emily
hendric
Mmmm...Pretty black dish...
gpurcell
It's just a wee little thing, isn't it!

I have to admit, there was a time when I thought this day would never happen. Grats to NASA and the DAWN team for pulling this mission out of the fire.
punkboi
QUOTE (elakdawalla @ Apr 12 2007, 10:17 AM) *
Aha -- thank you.

What's funny is that you were much faster on this than the press folks I'd gotten an inquiry to about these images. smile.gif I knew they had to exist but couldn't find them.

--Emily


Those press folks probably don't have their names on that microchip onboard the spacecraft, like I (or we?) do... That's the main reason why I'm so preoccupied with Dawn's launch preparations biggrin.gif

And when Phoenix hopefully arrives at KSC next month, that'll be twice the fun!
volcanopele
Nice summary, Emily! Your comments about how nerve-wracking it must be to have a spacecraft travel by truck to the Cape reminds me of the story of why Galileo's antenna failed to unfurl. The repeated trips back and forth between the Cape and JPL caused the loss of lubricant in the mechanisms that would later release the antenna ribs. Then, of course, these ribs got stuck while deploying, preventing the antenna's use during the mission.
nprev
No kidding, VP. Can't believe they didn't fly it. The Air Force can and will transport spacecraft to the Cape at very reasonable rates for NASA and its academic partners. In fact, Dawn looks as though it would fit on a C-130, which has the cheapest airlift charges of all, rarely encounters drunk drivers or slick roads, and has only hit a couple of deer here & there in the past 50+ years... tongue.gif

All kidding aside, this makes me wonder if risk assessments are ever done for transportation of one-of-a-kind spacecraft like Dawn. Comparing military or even commercial airlift to overland seems like a no-brainer from this perspective.
volcanopele
Wasn't NH airlifted to the Cape?
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