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Communications During Critical Mission Operations: Preparing for InSight's Landing on MarsRadio communications with deep space missions are often taken for granted due to the impressively successful records since, for decades, the technology and infrastructure have been developed for ground and flight systems to optimize telemetry and commanding. During mission-critical events such as the entry, descent, and landing of a spacecraft on the surface of Mars, the signal's level and frequency dynamics vary significantly and typically exceed the threshold of the budgeted links. The challenge is increased when spacecraft shed antennas with heat shields and other hardware during those risky few minutes. We have in the past successfully received signals on Earth during critical events even ones not intended for ground reception. These included the UHF signal transmitted by Curiosity to Marsorbiting assets. Since NASA's Deep Space Network does not operate in the UHF band, large radio telescopes around the world are utilized. The Australian CSIRO Parkes Radio Telescope supported the Curiosity UHF signal reception and DSN receivers, tools, and expertise were used in the process. In preparation for the InSight mission's landing on Mars in 2016, preparations are underway to support the UHF communications. This paper presents communication scenarios with radio telescopes, and the DSN receiver and tools. It also discusses the usefulness of the real-time information content for better response time by the mission team towards successful mission operations.
Document ID
20160008183
Document Type
Conference Paper
External Source(s)
Authors
Asmar, Sami
(Jet Propulsion Lab., California Inst. of Tech. Pasadena, CA, United States)
Oudrhiri, Kamal
(Jet Propulsion Lab., California Inst. of Tech. Pasadena, CA, United States)
Kurtik, Susan
(Jet Propulsion Lab., California Inst. of Tech. Pasadena, CA, United States)
Weinstein-Weiss, Stacy
(Jet Propulsion Lab., California Inst. of Tech. Pasadena, CA, United States)
Date Acquired
July 1, 2016
Publication Date
May 5, 2014
Subject Category
Space Communications, Spacecraft Communications, Command And Tracking
Meeting Information
International Conference on Space Operations (SpaceOps) 2014(Pasadena, CA)
Distribution Limits
Public
Copyright
Other
Keywords
Radio Science
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