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Waspie_Dwarf

NASA’s Dawn Mission to Asteroid Belt Ends

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Waspie_Dwarf

NASA’s Dawn Mission to Asteroid Belt Comes to End

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NASA’s Dawn spacecraft has gone silent, ending a historic mission that studied time capsules from the solar system’s earliest chapter.

Dawn missed scheduled communications sessions with NASA's Deep Space Network on Wednesday, Oct. 31, and Thursday, Nov. 1. After the flight team eliminated other possible causes for the missed communications, mission managers concluded that the spacecraft finally ran out of hydrazine, the fuel that enables the spacecraft to control its pointing. Dawn can no longer keep its antennas trained on Earth to communicate with mission control or turn its solar panels to the Sun to recharge.

arrow3.gif  Read More: NASA

 

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Gecks

Keplers dead, the opportunity rover is non responsive and now dawns dead. That all came to a finale at once didnt it?

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Hawken
2 hours ago, Gecks said:

Keplers dead, the opportunity rover is non responsive and now dawns dead. That all came to a finale at once didnt it?

It sure did. But all 3 exceeded expectations by lasting longer then planned.

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Gecks
44 minutes ago, Hawken said:

It sure did. But all 3 exceeded expectations by lasting longer then planned.

Thats a very solid point!

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seanjo

Can it be refueled? I know that's not possible right now, but, in the future, if we spread out, is there a "fuel cap/connection" that could be used to replenish it? Just something I wondered about.

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cyclopes500

Ceres and Vesta used to be a mystery to me. Good to know most of the mystery is solved from a personal perspective. As for refueling. Its a bit far off for that. However what we need is a garage in orbit. One with tanks of fuel, little robot tugs, and a few mechanics. Could we use the sun's magnetic field and the solar wind etc to orientate our spacecraft? To me it seems like a lot of expensive hardware gets junked just because the tank is empty. I know one thing I'd like to do. Send a robot tanker to the graveyard orbit and fix and refuel the satellites in that.

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AllPossible

Dawn of the Dead 

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Waspie_Dwarf
6 hours ago, seanjo said:

Can it be refueled? I know that's not possible right now, but, in the future, if we spread out, is there a "fuel cap/connection" that could be used to replenish it? Just something I wondered about.

NASA, DARPA and some private companies are working on ways to refuel spacecraft. However it's not an easy task especially with satellites that weren't designed for it.

The specific answer with Kepler is almost certainly no. Because it has run out of fuel it can no longer orientate itself, so it can't point its solar panels at the sun. With no electrical power it will not be able to regulate its temperature and so the electronics will be frozen and/or over heated.

Even if it could be refueled would it be worth it? It is old and partly crippled. Two of it's four reaction wheels had failed by 2013, requiring NASA to come up with an innovative plan to continue to operate Kepler albeit in a more limited way than before.

There are new and more capable exoplanet hunting missions coming, NASA's TESS has already launched and ESA's CHEOPS  is due for launch in early 2019.

There is little scientific or financial gain to be had from resurrecting Kepler.

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seanjo
3 hours ago, Waspie_Dwarf said:

NASA, DARPA and some private companies are working on ways to refuel spacecraft. However it's not an easy task especially with satellites that weren't designed for it.

The specific answer with Kepler is almost certainly no. Because it has run out of fuel it can no longer orientate itself, so it can't point its solar panels at the sun. With no electrical power it will not be able to regulate its temperature and so the electronics will be frozen and/or over heated.

Even if it could be refueled would it be worth it? It is old and partly crippled. Two of it's four reaction wheels had failed by 2013, requiring NASA to come up with an innovative plan to continue to operate Kepler albeit in a more limited way than before.

There are new and more capable exoplanet hunting missions coming, NASA's TESS has already launched and ESA's CHEOPS  is due for launch in early 2019.

There is little scientific or financial gain to be had from resurrecting Kepler.

It's just something I thought about when I read this story.

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Waspie_Dwarf
24 minutes ago, seanjo said:

It's just something I thought about when I read this story.

It's a good thought. :tu:

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MyOtherAccount
On 11/4/2018 at 5:08 PM, Gecks said:

Keplers dead, the opportunity rover is non responsive and now dawns dead. That all came to a finale at once didnt it?

Yeah and it seems like such a waste!  If a probe is nearly out of fuel, it is too bad we can't put it in a trajectory that will sling it to another target we might not know anything about. I could be somewhere closer to the sun so that the system can stay charged up. That would stretch the dollar a bit more. Once it is in space the really expensive part has been done. Hey, maybe in the sling it could approach the each to be refitted or such. Just a fun thought... 

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Waspie_Dwarf
6 hours ago, MyOtherAccount said:

If a probe is nearly out of fuel, it is too bad we can't put it in a trajectory that will sling it to another target we might not know anything about.

How do you do that when it's nearly out of fuel?

The entire point of being out of fuel is that you can't send it anywhere. Even if you could use some magical system to send it somewhere else, when it arrives, if it has no fuel, it can't point and do science.

Basically what you are suggesting would take a spacecraft that is nearly dead and kill it quicker.

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MyOtherAccount
16 hours ago, Waspie_Dwarf said:

How do you do that when it's nearly out of fuel?

The entire point of being out of fuel is that you can't send it anywhere. Even if you could use some magical system to send it somewhere else, when it arrives, if it has no fuel, it can't point and do science.

Basically what you are suggesting would take a spacecraft that is nearly dead and kill it quicker.

Okay... If the probe is going to be inoperable when it runs out of fuel, it is too bad that plans weren't made--when at the drawing board--so that when there is just enough fuel left it could be sent by slingshot to another location or to orbit the earth for a planned intercept and refueling, or to disassemble for the instruments to be put on the moon or mars station.

A note: See my discourse (a blog entry under the alias of "Encouraged" on this site) on the degrees of ambiguity in language; as in precise wording (Boolean), ideally ambiguous (English), and too ambiguous (Tok Pision). Without expressions containing sufficient ambiguity, we would spend an inordinate amount of time and energy having to clarify what is said for the people who have the intelligence and responsibility to invest their own time and energy in attempts to understand what a person has said. So, note that what I said was sufficient to render the meaning I have now given.

Peace,
--johne

Edited by MyOtherAccount
to remove a "not", add a phrase, and also add em dashes as in "--". Oh, and to add why it was edited.

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Waspie_Dwarf
6 hours ago, MyOtherAccount said:

Okay... If the probe is going to be inoperable when it runs out of fuel, it is too bad that plans weren't made--when at the drawing board--so that when there is just enough fuel left it could be sent by slingshot to another location or to orbit the earth for a planned intercept and refueling, or to disassemble for the instruments to be put on the moon or mars station.

A note: See my discourse (a blog entry under the alias of "Encouraged" on this site) on the degrees of ambiguity in language; as in precise wording (Boolean), ideally ambiguous (English), and too ambiguous (Tok Pision). Without expressions containing sufficient ambiguity, we would spend an inordinate amount of time and energy having to clarify what is said for the people who have the intelligence and responsibility to invest their own time and energy in attempts to understand what a person has said. So, note that what I said was sufficient to render the meaning I have now given.

Peace,
--johne

It would take a HUGE amount of fuel to send the spacecraft back to Earth, fuel it didn't have.

No spacecraft has ever been refuelled in space, it is a technology still in it's infancy with experiments ongoing. Dawn was launched 11 years ago.

I'm not sure you are grasping the implications of being low on fuel in deep space, you can't just drive to the nearest garage and fill up. Dawn took 4 years to reach the asteroid belt... and it need a fly-by of Mars to make it that quickly. It took it 2½ years to get from Vesta to Ceres.

So basically what you are suggesting is to use fuel an ageing spacecraft doesn't have to make a trip of at least four years to be refuelled with technology we don't have so that it can make another trip of at least 4 years. Does that make sense to you?

Why send it somewhere else when it still had things to learn at Ceres? (In fact NASA actually looked at the idea of sending it to a third asteroid but decided that there was more to be gained by remaining in orbit around Ceres).

What all the off-topic waffle about ambiguity is about I have no idea, but if you want an unambiguous statement how about this: when it comes to deep space exploration NASA really know what they are talking about. You really don't.

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MyOtherAccount
3 minutes ago, MyOtherAccount said:

Earlier in this topic I suggested that there be further thought about the expense of not making mission equipment already in space available for reuse.  (See my postings above.)  Little did I know--apparently little did others members know--people were planning on making improvements in that area of space missions.

The only responses I got, that might be of interest to members were from Waspi_Dwarf and are still above.  I guess those were responses...

 

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