The spacecraft is currently about 37 million kilometers
from Earth and continues to function as expected. The total travel distance
covered since launch is 248 million kilometers, which means that the spacecraft
has reached the halfway point to Mars. A set of Entry, Descent, and Landing
communications tests were started this week using the spacecraft and the
Deep Space Network Galileo Telemetry recorders at Goldstone. These tests
are meant to simulate the open loop strategy that we intend to use during
entry to record significant events. The first test was successfully completed
on March 3, and three additional tests will be performed during the next
The project completed Surface Operational Readiness Test #3 on March 7-8. This test was the first formal operations test after launch, and was designed to test the nominal Sol 1 and 2 sequences. Although there were a few start up problems, the test was generally successful. All elements of the project worked well together to complete the critical Sol 1 operations and re-plan Sol 2.
The Rover Operations Team performed remote field testing on Monday and Tuesday. With the SIM Rover at Amboy Crater, the Operations Team ran four Martian sol sequences from JPL. The sequences included navigation and traverse activities, and science and technology experiments. The Pathfinder Science Team also participated in the testing.
Back to the Mars Pathfinder Home Page