NEAR Mission Status Reports –


The NEAR spacecraft continued to operate nominally in Operational Mode
with Flight Computer #1 and Attitude Interface Unit #2 in control. NEAR
continues to Sun-point (GS-5). All instruments remained “ON” during this

NEAR is presently 115,095.0 Km from Eros (71,516.6 miles).

All preparations for TCM 21 including a full command level review and
testing have been completed this week. The command load will be uplinked
to the spacecraft today for execution next Monday.

Flight Controller training of recent new hires continues. The final
addition to the Eros orbital operations team starts Dec 6, 1999.

Preparations for the December flight tests continue. A peer review will
be held today for the December 15, 1999 flight test of the NIS Low Phase
Eros Flyby activities taking place prior to the Eros Orbit Insertion Burn.
Testing of this command sequence with the Statesim software simulator is
completed. The brassboard simulation of the 30-hr sequence was started
yesterday. Test results to date will be covered at today’s review.

An updated S/C orbit was loaded (as per orbit load procedures) on Dec 1,
but DSN problems (station 25 maser taken away for Mars Lander) prevented a
successful dump and compare of the orbit load. This will be completed
during today’s track.

Because of the maser problems at station 25, NEAR DSN scheduling is
attempting to switch upcoming NEAR supports from Station 25 to Station 15.
The support for next Monday’s TCM 21 has already been switched to 15.

Upcoming Spacecraft Activities:

The following are operationally significant activities planned for the
December time frame:

Dec 6 TCM 21 – test of TCM 20 “fix”

Dec 8 Post TCM 21 orbit load (preparation for flight tests)

Dec 15 Flight Test of Rendezvous Sequence

Dec 17 NLR/MSI Co-Timing Test

Dec 20 MSI/SDC Lightcurve and OpNav Test

GO Polar Lander!