Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Momentum Management Maneuver #27 Today, Joint Solar Eclipse Tomorrow

Today at 1857 UTC (2:57 p.m. ET) SDO will do MM #27. Science mode will stop at 1847 UTC and resume at 1917 UTC (3:17 p.m. ET). Science data may be blurry or absent during that time.
Tomorrow morning between 0715 and 0731 UTC (3:15-3:31 a.m. ET), SDO will see a lunar transit as SDO exits an Earth eclipse. Parts of Africa will observe an annular solar eclipse at the same time. While these double eclipses were rare early in the SDO mission, two have happened in the last year. The SDO flight dynamics team cannot yet tell whether we will see another one next year. Even though the Sun and Moon loom large in our images, they are actually quite small and SDO's view may have the Moon outside of the Sun next September.
Enjoy the 2016 SDO Joint Solar Eclipse!

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Station Keeping Maneuver Today and the Next Lunar Transit

Today from 2240-2305 UTC (6:40-7:05 p.m. ET) SDO will execute a station-keeping maneuver that keeps us within our assigned longitude box. The instruments may return data during this time, but it could be blurry.

Looking forward to September we have another lunar transit on September 1, 2016 from 0715-0731 UTC (3:15-3:31 a.m. ET). This transit will start while SDO is in the shadow of the Earth. That means when we see the Earth move out of the way the Moon will be covering part of the Sun. While these double transits did not happen the first 5 years of the mission, we may see a couple more as the Moon's orbit slowly shifts.
Here is a movie from the flight operations team showing the double transit.

On August 31, 2016, SDO will perform the EVE field of view and HMI/AIA Flatfield Maneuvers. More on that later.

Saturday, August 6, 2016

You Never Miss Them 'TIl They're Gone!

I had forgotten how nice it was to see the Sun each morning in all of the different ways SDO provides.

It took longer then we expected, but as of the end of the Friday work day, SDO is in science mode and all three instruments are returning science data. AIA is currently taking images with the nominal 8 images every 12 second program but it is running an older version of flight software that is affecting the Image Status Packet. We plan to leave the system in this configuration over the weekend.

It's been a long week for the SDO team and I hope they can return Monday ready to fix the remaining issues.

Thanks to all who helped SDO to return to operations.


Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Lunar Transit this Morning

SDO had a lunar transit this morning from 1113-1207 UTC (7:13-8:08 a.m. ET). The spacecraft did not go back into Science mode at the end of the transit. SDO FOT members are looking into the issue.