CAPSTONE Mission is acknowledged for cutting-edge efforts of recent and ongoing technical innovation for Small Satellites
Have you heard? We won Small Satellite Mission of the Year! It’s been a long journey from concept to launch, and we still have quite a journey ahead of us as we continue to the Moon, but CAPSTONE could not have gone so far without the support of our community. (more…)
Congratulations KPLO on yesterday’s launch! We’ll see you out there!
CAPSTONE will be leading KPLO by around 1 month on its way to the Moon. As more missions head to the Moon, safety and transparency are key. We are working with partners to make sure operations in cislunar space are sustainable for the long term.
Spacecraft remains on target to test navigation technology and lunar operations to support NASA’s Moon missions under Artemis programs
It is hard to believe we launched CAPSTONE almost a month ago. We have encountered many variables that have kept this mission exciting, and the mission operators have been active. The Advanced Space Astrodynamics and Navigation Engineers have been busy for years leading up to this and just as busy this last month as CAPSTONE flies. An assumption may be that a small satellite means less work but in actuality the effort is just as great if not more so. Small satellites with small budgets and size restrictions require more creativity and calculated steps to ensure precision and execution through the process. (more…)
CAPSTONE achieved another positive milestone today after the spacecraft executed the second scheduled trajectory correction maneuver (TCM) today at approximately 9:30 am MT. The spacecraft burn was relatively small as it consumed ~35 grams of fuel. The purpose of the maneuver completes the corrective actions of the spacecraft separation from the Lunar Photon – a necessary and routine step to ensure the transfer trajectory remains on track. Even though this was a small maneuver, this further validates the spacecraft design, which was optimized for precise orbital operations. (more…)
The CAPSTONE mission team has rescheduled the trajectory correction maneuver (TCM) originally targeting for this morning to review additional data and perform additional analysis to support modeling of the spacecraft performance during maneuvers. The rescheduled plan does not have any significant impact on the size of the planned correction maneuver which was part of the of TCM executed two days prior. The spacecraft is healthy, communicating with NASA’s Deep Space Network (DSN) and in a nominal state. (more…)
As we wrap up an active week for CAPSTONE, and happy to report the spacecraft is healthy and everything is operating nominally. We want to give a big thank you to everyone involved. To Rocket Lab, thank you for the launch and successful separation from Photon. To NASA, NASA’s Deep Space Network (DSN), Space Dynamics Laboratory (SDL), thank you for the support during our troubleshooting and resolution. And a big thanks to our teams at Terran Orbital’s Mission Operations Center, NASA’s DSN, and our own team in our Advanced Space Operations Center. Plus, we appreciate the well wishes from customers, industry partners and friends. (more…)