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The Genesis Solar Wind Sample Return MissionThe Genesis spacecraft was launched on August 8 from Cape Canaveral on a journey to become the first spacecraft to return from interplanetary space. The fifth in NASA's line of low-cost Discovery-class missions, its goal is to collect samples of solar wind and return them to Earth for detailed isotopic and elemental analysis. The spacecraft is to collect solar wind for over two years, while circling the L1 point 1.5 million km sunward of the earth, before heading back for a capsule-style re-entry in September, 2004. After parachute deployment, a mid-air helicopter recovery will be used to avoid a hard landing. The mission has been in the planning stages for over ten years. Its cost, including development, mission operations, and sample analysis, is approximately $209M. The Genesis science team, headed by principal investigator Donald Burnett of Caltech, consists of approximately 20 co-investigators from universities and science centers around the country and internationally. The spacecraft consists of a relatively flat spacecraft bus containing most of the subsystem components, situated below a sample return capsule (SRC) which holds the solar-wind collection substrates and an electrostatic solar wind concentrator. Some of the collectors are exposed throughout the collection period, for a sample of bulk solar wind, while others are exposed only to certain solar wind regimes, or types of flow. Ion and electron spectrometers feed raw data to the spacecraft control and data-handling (C&DH) unit, which determines ion moments and electron flux geometries in real time. An algorithm is used to robotically decide between interstream (IS), coronal hole (CH), and coronal mass ejection (CME) regimes, and to control deployment of the proper arrays to sample these wind regimes independently. This is the first time such a solar-wind decision algorithm has been used on board a spacecraft.
Document ID
20040010577
Document Type
Other
Authors
Wiens, Roger C. (Los Alamos National Lab. NM, United States)
Burnett, Donald S. (California Inst. of Tech. Pasadena, CA, United States)
Neugebauer, Marcia (Jet Propulsion Lab., California Inst. of Tech. Pasadena, CA, United States)
Sasaki, Chester (Jet Propulsion Lab., California Inst. of Tech. Pasadena, CA, United States)
Sevilla, Donald (Jet Propulsion Lab., California Inst. of Tech. Pasadena, CA, United States)
Stansbery, Eileen (NASA Johnson Space Center Houston, TX, United States)
Clark, Ben (Lockheed Martin Astronautics Denver, CO, United States)
Smith, Nick (Lockheed Martin Astronautics Denver, CO, United States)
Oldham, Lloyd (Lockheed Martin Astronautics Denver, CO, United States)
Date Acquired
September 7, 2013
Publication Date
January 1, 1990
Publication Information
Publication: Space Science Reference Guide, 2nd Edition
Subject Category
Solar Physics
Funding Number(s)
CONTRACT_GRANT: JPL-19272
Distribution Limits
Public
Copyright
Public Use Permitted.

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IDRelationTitle20040010556Analytic PrimarySpace Science Reference Guide, 2nd Edition