There was one Deep Space Network (DSN) tracking pass during the past
week and spacecraft performance remains normal. Flight cruise sequence
SC017 is now active.

The next tracking pass includes the final aerogel grid position update,
which will move the grid to its full open position.

Command were transmitted to the spacecraft to increase the telemetry
reporting of the number of valid stars that the Star camera sees. The
camera usually sees about ten stars but lately has seen as few as
three. Data indicates no change in Camera performance. This fluctuation
appears to be a function of spacecraft pointing during Sun pointing.
The increased telemetry production will provide some insight into
this fluctuation.

The first interstellar dust collection campaign will end next week on
May 1. The aerogel collector will be retracted and the Sample Return Capsule
(SRC) will then be closed. STARDUST has been collecting interstellar dust
since February 22, 2000.

For more information on the STARDUST mission – the first ever
comet sample return mission – please visit the STARDUST home page: