SpaceRef note: Be certain to check out the new Eros rotation movies based upon NEAR imagery taken on 12 January 2000.


The NEAR spacecraft continued to operate nominally in Operational Mode with Flight Computer #1 and Attitude
Interface Unit #2 in control. All instruments remained “ON” during this week. S/C Attitude pointing continues
to alternate between Eros pointing, Earth pointing, and Sun pointing as required to conduct Eros approach

NEAR is presently 29,532 Km from Eros (18,351 miles).

The second test of the Eros rendezvous sequence was completed successfully on January 20. Review of the
engineering data indicates this second flight test of the 30 hour sequence leading up to Eros orbit insertion
(includes NIS Low Phase Flyby) was successful.

The MSI Eros Light Curve 2 was conducted as planned on January 18.

It should be mentioned that no significant problems with DSN supports have occurred since the start of Eros
approach operations. Many thanks to those at the DSN for the reliable support.

Regular Eros OpNav images were taken this week.

Final preparations and testing of the NEAR command load to start on January 24 are completed. This
command load includes all activities planned through January 30. It will be uplinked during tomorrow’s DSN

Upcoming Spacecraft Activities:

In addition to regular DSN tracking and taking of OpNav images, the following are operationally significant
activities planned through Eros orbit insertion. Please consult the NEAR Flight Timeline for more details
regarding upcoming science activities.

  • Jan 21 Flight Test of NLR/MSI Co-timing
  • Jan 28 Eros Satellite Search B
  • Feb 2 Rendezvous Maneuver
  • Feb 4 Eros Satellite Search C
  • Feb 8 Rendezvous Maneuver and Momentum Bias
  • Feb 9 Eros Satellite Search D
  • Feb 14 Eros Orbit Insertion