TESS — Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite ("Спутник наблюдения за транзитами экзопланет")

Автор Andrey Samoilov, 11.10.2014 00:43:44

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ЦитатаNASA_TESS‏Подлинная учетная запись @NASA_TESS 5 сек.5 секунд назад

Looking forward to warm summer weather? Maybe not so warm as a Hot Jupiter! These gas giants are so close to their stars that their atmospheres boil away!  ;)


ЦитатаThe Unique Orbit of NASA's Newest Planet Hunter

NASA Goddard

Опубликовано: 4 апр. 2018 г.

NASA's Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite - TESS - will fly in an orbit that completes two circuits around Earth every time the Moon orbits once. This special orbit will allow TESS's cameras to monitor each patch of sky continuously for nearly a month at a time. To get into this orbit, TESS will make a series of loops culminating in a lunar gravity assist, which will give it the final push it needs. TESS will reach its orbit about 60 days after launch.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-AIbD2WxyN8https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-AIbD2WxyN8 (1:19)


ЦитатаNASA_TESS‏Подлинная учетная запись @NASA_TESS 5 ч. назад

Before leaving on a long trip, you should have a full tank of gas! @NASA_TESS completed fueling this week @NASAKennedy as part of preparations for launch. Fuel used on #TESS is hydrazine, which is extremely toxic to humans.
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ЦитатаChris B - NSF‏ @NASASpaceflight 20 мин. назад

NASA's TESS spacecraft is the next SpaceX launch. Static Fire test is still NET Wednesday. Launch is NET April 16.

Chris Gebhardt (@ChrisG_NSF) photo of the happy passenger riding on a new Falcon 9 (B1045.1)


ЦитатаChris B - NSF‏ @NASASpaceflight 14 мин. назад

There's a brand new, shiny white, non-sooty SpaceX Falcon 9 (B1045.1) sat vertically on the Cape's SLC-40 right now, waiting for her Static Fire test ahead of next week's TESS launch. Test Window opens at 11 AM local.


ЦитатаNASA_TESS‏Подлинная учетная запись @NASA_TESS 18 ч. назад

Team members on @NASA_TESS signed a dedication plaque that was attached to the observatory. Many individuals contributed to make TESS and the discovery of new exoplanets possible.


ЦитатаHow NASA's Newest Planet Hunter Scans the Sky

NASA Goddard

Опубликовано: 10 апр. 2018 г.

TESS, the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite, is NASA's newest exoplanet mission. Led by MIT, TESS will find thousands of new planets orbiting nearby stars. During its two year survey, TESS will watch a wide variety of stars, looking for signs of planets ranging from Earth-size to larger than Jupiter.

Each of TESS's cameras has a 16.8-megapixel sensor covering a square 24 degrees wide -- large enough to contain an entire constellation. TESS has four of these cameras arranged to view a long strip of the sky called an observation sector. TESS will watch each observation sector for about 27 days before rotating to the next. It will cover the southern sky in its first year, and then begin scanning the north.

TESS will study 85 percent of the sky -- an area 350 times greater than what NASA's Kepler mission first observed -- making TESS the first exoplanet mission to survey nearly the entire sky. Because TESS's observation sectors overlap, it will have an area near the pole under constant observation. This region is easily monitored by the James Webb Space Telescope, which allows the two missions to work together to first find, and then carefully study exoplanets.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=evHF_mnIdj4https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=evHF_mnIdj4 (1:34)


ЦитатаNASA_TESS‏Подлинная учетная запись @NASA_TESS 1 ч. назад

The @SpaceX #Falcon9 fairing for @NASA_TESS arrived over the weekend to meet #TESS for encapsulation @NASAKennedy. After launch, TESS will find new planets around other stars, called exoplanets, that scientists will study for decades to come.


ЦитатаStephen Clark‏ @StephenClark1 3 мин. назад

SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket, the last new Block 4 version booster, stands vertical at pad 40 at Cape Canaveral for a hotfire attempt this afternoon. Launch with NASA's TESS observatory set for Monday evening.


ЦитатаNASA Kennedy / KSC‏Подлинная учетная запись @NASAKennedy 9 мин. назад

NASA and SpaceX are targeting the launch of NASA's Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS) on a Falcon 9 rocket at CCAFS in FL at 6:32 pm ET on Mon, Apr 16. Mission coverage will begin Sun, Apr 15 with 3 live briefings. For more on live coverage: https://go.nasa.gov/2vd3nwD 


ЦитатаNAVAREA IV 293/2018 (11,26)

   162227Z TO 162325Z APR, ALTERNATE
   172208Z TO 172307Z APR IN AREAS BOUND BY:
   A. 28-36N 080-36W, 28-40N 080-18W,
   28-40N 080-02W, 28-36N 080-02W,
   28-32N 080-14W, 28-30N 080-26W,
   28-31N 080-34W, 28-32N 080-37W.
   B. 29-08N 077-52W, 29-38N 074-51W,
   29-38N 073-50W, 28-38N 073-50W,
   28-38N 077-52W.
2. CANCEL THIS MSG 180007Z APR 18.

( 110827Z APR 2018 )
Пусковое окно: 22:27 - 23:25 UTC 16.04.2018
Резерв: 22:08 - 23:07 UTC 17.04.2018


ЦитатаSpaceflight Now‏ @SpaceflightNow 3 мин. назад

SpaceX has test-fired its Falcon 9 rocket at Cape Canaveral ahead of Monday's scheduled launch of a NASA exoplanet-hunting telescope. Full story to come.




ЦитатаFalcon 9 Fires Up Ahead of Monday Liftoff with NASA's TESS Exoplanet Hunter
 April 11, 2018

Photo: SpaceX (File)
A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket fired up atop the company's Cape Canaveral Air Force Station launch pad on Wednesday for the customary static fire test ahead of entering final preparations for liftoff as early as Monday with NASA's TESS exoplanet hunter, to be dispatched on a mission to collect an all-sky survey of planets orbiting stars in Earth's astronomical neighborhood.

Falcon 9 will be tasked with lifting the 360-Kilogram Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS) into a highly elliptical orbit peaking around 270,000 Kilometers above the planet from where it will be up to the spacecraft to go through an incredibly elaborate orbital ballet involving thruster firings and a lunar gravity assist. If all goes well, TESS will achieve a unique lunar-resonant orbit with a period of half a lunar day - chosen because it provides the mission with a disturbance-free observation environment from a thermal, radiation and stray-light standpoint.
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Photo: Orbital ATK

Tasked with a survey of 85% of the sky, TESS is expected to detect and characterize in excess of 10,000 new exoplanets including a rather large sample of around 500 Earth-sized and Super Earth planets including some in the habitable zones around their host stars. Capable of delivering a detailed inventory of potentially habitable exoplanets, TESS is considered a critical precursor to NASA's James Webb Space Telescope that will be tasked with detailed characterization of potentially habitable worlds far from Earth.

Wednesday's Static Fire Test involved a brand-new Falcon 9 rocket, almost a rarity these days as SpaceX flew four out of the company's six Falcon 9 missions in 2018 with used hardware. TESS, classed as a "medium-risk" mission by NASA's Launch Services Program, has been contracted to fly on a new vehicle and will employ Falcon 9 Booster 1045, the final new Block 4 vehicle to take to the skies before SpaceX will debut its finalized version of Falcon 9 known as Block 5.

Image: NASA

The two-stage Falcon 9 - still missing its payload - was raised to its vertical launch position atop the SLC-40 launch pad by Wednesday morning, local time, just nine days after a flight-proven Falcon 9 vacated the pad when lifting the 14th operational Dragon resupply mission into orbit. Poised for a brief firing of its engines, Falcon 9 went through a complete tanking sequence to put both stages through a complete propellant loading, thermal and pressurization cycle in an end-to-end exercise of all systems on the vehicle and ground side.

Ignition of the nine Merlin 1D engines of the first stage occurred around 2:40 p.m. local time, 18:40 UTC - several hours into the day's test window. Visually, the burn appeared to meet its planned 3.5-second duration and SpaceX confirmed via Twitter that the Static Fire Test was a success - meaning the firing ran its desired duration and all data required for in-depth reviews was acquired. As part of its next steps, Falcon 9 was to be de-tanked and moved back into the pad-side hangar to receive its payload in the coming days to set up for liftoff on Monday - pending clearance of final reviews including analysis of performance data from Wednesday's engine firing.

Photo: NASA Kennedy

The $243 million TESS mission is targeting liftoff during a minute-long launch window at 22:32 UTC on Monday, April 16 - essentially giving the mission an instantaneous shot at leaving the ground due to Falcon 9's complex countdown sequence. Around ten consecutive launch opportunities are available for TESS before the alignment between Cape Canaveral and the target lunar flyby would require a multi-day stand-down before the next window would open.

From its Atlantic-side launch pad, Falcon 9 will be headed due east to send TESS on its way via a two-burn mission, initially taking the craft into a preliminary Parking Orbit before the MVac-powered second stage re-starts within visibility of ground stations in Africa to boost the spacecraft into its highly elliptical target orbit. Documentation indicates this mission will employ a first stage recovery via SpaceX's East Coast Drone Ship "Of Course I Still Love You" stationed around 300 Kilometers downrange from the launch pad.

TESS Orbit Design - Image: TESS Project

Starting out in an orbit of 200 by 270,000 Kilometers, 28.5 degrees, TESS will be tasked with a series of engine burns over the course of three and a half orbits to intercept its lunar flyby window. This will be followed by another set of engine burns to reach an operational orbit of 107,000 by 376,000 Kilometers, inclined 37 degrees. This way, TESS will make two orbits for every one orbit of the Moon in order to have the lunar gravity 'pull' from either side for exactly half the time and so cancel out a potentially perturbing effect of the Moon.

The 13.65-day period of the craft's orbit will permit very long observation arcs, as required for detecting exoplanets through the transit method: carefully tracking the light curves of thousands of target stars to identify characteristic dips in brightness when an exoplanet crosses before the star.

>> TESS Orbit Design

Image: NASA/TESS Project

The TESS Project started out as a concept study at MIT in 2006 and an initial mission proposal was submitted in 2008 as a follow-on program to NASA's Kepler exoplanet mission. NASA sel ected the mission in 2013 after the proposal was re-submitted under the agency's Explorers Program.

Built by Orbital ATK based on the well-proven LEOStar-2 platform, TESS weighs in at 362 Kilograms and hosts four identical CCD imaging instruments built by MIT Lincoln Lab. The four cameras are installed such that their 24 by 24-degree fields of view are combined to allow TESS to view a 24 by 96-degree sector of the sky in a staring-sensor concept that collects a continuous stream of two-minute exposures of up to 15,000 target stars plus full-sky images every thirty minutes. TESS will be programmed to stare at each 24 x 96° sector for two orbits (~27 days) before stepping east to the next sector - covering the southern hemisphere in the first year of the two-year primary mission before moving on to the northern hemisphere.

>> TESS Instrument Overview

Given its observation geometry, TESS will be able to cover 85% of the sky during its two-year surveying mission with some 200,000 target stars to be observed by the spacecraft. Kepler, while capable of detecting more distant exoplanets, can only observe a very small slice of the sky at any time and is therefore not suitable for a systematic survey.

TESS Cameras - Photo: TESS Project

Image: TESS Project

Additionally, TESS has been optimized through its optical design to observe stars 30 to 100 times brighter than those observed by Kepler, focusing on easy-to-study exoplanets in Earth's astronomical neighborhood (up to distances of 300 light years) - covering G, K and M-type stars with optical magnitudes brighter than Mag 12. The ultimate goal for TESS is the creation of a large catalog of the nearest and brightest stars hosting exoplanets to keep the scientific community busy for years to come.

The reason behind focusing TESS on the solar neighborhood is a desire to identify exoplanets that can be easily studied with current ground-based telescopes and space telescopes that are already under development like James Webb and the budget-threatened WFIRST. Follow-up observations of astronomically-close exoplanets will yield their mass, size and density to allow for a basic differentiation between rocky planets, ice giants or gaseous worlds like Jupiter while spectral observations will shed light on the composition of their atmosphere - a critical piece of information when assessing their habitability fr om afar.

Although TESS will capture a treasure trove of data via its two-year primary mission, the spacecraft has been designed to last up to 20 years and the specialized orbit has also been simulated to be sufficiently stable for that period of time. However long TESS may last, its scientific legacy is likely one for the ages as the exoplanets it'll discover will be prime observation candidates for decades, if not centuries to come. But all currently hinges on SpaceX's Falcon 9 as an on-target delivery will be paramount for TESS reaching its observation location and beginning its mission of discovery.


ЦитатаSpaceX rocket test-fired at Cape Canaveral for NASA telescope launch
April 11, 2018Stephen Clark

SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket, without its payload fairing or the satellite passenger, fired its nine Merlin 1D booster engines for several seconds Wednesday at Cape Canaveral's Complex 40 launch pad. Credit: Stephen Clark/Spaceflight Now

SpaceX's launch team loaded super-chilled liquid propellants into a two-stage Falcon 9 rocket Wednesday and fired the booster's nine first stage engines at Cape Canaveral, marching toward liftoff Monday with a NASA observatory built to find planets around other stars in our galactic neighborhood.
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The Falcon 9's nine Merlin 1D booster engines ignited at 2:30 p.m. EDT (1830 GMT) Wednesday as hold-down clamps kept the rocket firmly on Earth at Cape Canaveral's Complex 40 launch pad. A plume of exhaust visible fr om nearby viewing points appeared at the launch pad, and SpaceX tweeted later Wednesday that the static fire test was complete.

The hold-down firing was a key milestone in the run-up to launch Monday of NASA's Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite, an approximately $337 million mission that will survey the sky in search of tell-tale dips in light fr om bright, nearby stars. The brief, slight reduction in brightness registered by TESS could be evidence of a planet passing in front of the star.

TESS will be the first NASA space science satellite to launch on a SpaceX rocket, and it's the space agency's second mission devoted to finding and cataloguing exoplanets.

NASA's Kepler observatory, launched in March 2009, looked for planets around stars residing in a section of the sky in the constellations Cygnus and Lyra, then expanded its survey to observe other parts of the sky in the ecliptic plane, the relatively flat imaginary plane wh ere our solar system's planets reside.

Kepler has found more than confirmed 2,652 exoplanets, and 2,724 candidate discoveries await follow-up observations before astronomers declare those detections as real planets, according to data published in NASA's exoplanet archive. Looping around the sun in an Earth-trailing heliocentric orbit, Kepler has discovered more than 70 percent of all the known exoplanets to date.

But TESS will look for exoplanets across 85 percent of the sky, giving astronomers a more three-dimensional survey of worlds lurking in other solar systems, focusing on bright stars that are in the same part of the Milky Way galaxy as the sun.

TESS during a solar array deployment test at Kennedy Space Center's Payload Hazardous Servicing Facility. Credit: NASA/Leif Heimbold

The new TESS observatory will "build upon the legacy of the Kepler mission, only it is going to focus on nearby bright stars that are sprinkled across the whole sky, and it's going to help us answer a really important question: Which of our nearest stellar neighbors have planets?" said Elisa Quintana, an astrophysicist and TESS mission support scientist at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Maryland.

TESS carries four science cameras developed by MIT's Kavli Institute for Astrophysics and Space Research and the MIT Lincoln Laboratory. Each camera contains a 16.8-megapixel sensor covering a field of view of 24-by-24 degrees, with the sensitivity to detect faint dips in star brightness and a coverage area wide enough to look at thousands of targets.

"The coverage of the TESS cameras is unprecedented in terms of the amount of sky that they can actually see at any given time, and also their ability to cover such a broad portion of the sky," said George Ricker, the mission's principal investigator from MIT. "The types of targets that TESS will allow us to find will enclose essentially all the bright nearby stars."

Liftoff of TESS is scheduled for 6:32 p.m. EDT (2232 GMT) Monday from pad 40 at Cape Canaveral.

TESS will launch into an egg-shaped preliminary orbit stretching as far as 155,000 miles (250,000 kilometers) from Earth, around 60 percent of the distance to the moon. Once deployed from the Falcon 9's second stage, the roughly 815-pound (370-kilogram) spacecraft will fire thrusters to boost the farthest arc of its orbit to intercept the moon.

TESS will swing by the moon, using lunar gravity to slingshot toward the mission's operating orbit. A final major maneuver will steer the satellite on a path taking it around the planet once every two weeks in a 2:1 resonance with the moon, with distances ranging between 67,000 miles (108,000 kilometers) and 233,000 miles (376,000 kilometers) from Earth.

"The Falcon 9 does a lot of the lifting for us, and then the moon does most of the rest of it," said Robert Lockwood, TESS program director at Orbital ATK, which built the spacecraft.

The launch of TESS is timed to ensure the moon is in the right place in its orbit around Earth to allow the satellite to make its crucial lunar flyby. If Monday's launch is delayed or scrubbed, launch opportunities will not be available on some days due to moon's orbital dynamics.

But Ricker said Wednesday that TESS can blast off any day through April 21, before waiting for a new block of potential launch dates around the end of April.

The Falcon 9 rocket's payload fairing for the TESS mission. Credit: NASA

Since arriving at the Kennedy Space Center in February, TESS has been fueled with maneuvering propellant for its rocket thrusters, and encapsulated inside the Falcon 9 rocket's payload fairing, the aerodynamic shell that will protect the spacecraft during the first few minutes of launch.

Now that the static fire test is complete, the TESS spacecraft and the rocket's nose cone will be moved to SpaceX's hangar at pad 40, wh ere ground crews will install the payload once the Falcon 9 is lowered off its launch mount and rolled back inside.

The Falcon 9 rocket assigned to the TESS mission will fly with a new first stage booster, and SpaceX is expected to attempt to recover the stage on a drone ship in the Atlantic Ocean for potential refurbishment and reuse. TESS will launch with the final newly-manufactured "Block 4" version of SpaceX's workhorse rocket, before several upgrades will debut in a new "Block 5" version set to launch for the first time in early May.

It will take around two months for TESS to settle into its unusual orbit and complete post-launch testing. Then scientists will press the observatory into a two-year mission searching for exoplanets.

Ricker proposed the TESS mission to NASA in 2012, and the project won government funding the next year. Now the mission is days from launch.

"It feels wonderful in one way," Ricker said in an interview with Spaceflight Now. "It's a little bit daunting because now that it's really going to happen, we'll see the rocket light and that will be all that we can conceivably do. We've done pretty much everything we can with the instruments and the spacecraft by delivering them here to Kennedy (Space Center) so that the launch preparations can really occur in earnest."

Expect some new worlds added to the exoplanet count by the end of the year.

"I think there's going to be a teething problem as there always will be with a new satellite," Ricker said. "So it will probably be some time in the fall before we have some interesting results to share."


ЦитатаSpaceX - TESS - Static Fire Test 04-11-2018


Опубликовано: 11 апр. 2018 г.

Bad picture quality due to very high winds and air moisture. This should be the last Falcon 1.2. Next, up Block 5
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yJQfQUHdZyAhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yJQfQUHdZyA (2:02)


ЦитатаJeff Foust‏ @jeff_foust 50 мин. назад

Ricker shows this slide of schedule for TESS launch preps; notes that if it doesn't launch for some reason by April 27, they have to stand down until early June so NASA Launch Services can support the InSight launch from Vandenberg.
Хм, получается, что если до 26 апреля включительно не запустят, то следующая попытка - не ранее 9 июня с.г.




ЦитатаNASA and SpaceX Prepare to Launch Planet-hunting Spacecraft

Anna Heiney
Posted Apr 12, 2018 at 3:05 pm

The payload fairing for NASA's Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS) is being moved to the Payload Hazardous Servicing Facility at the agency's Kennedy Space Center in Florida. Inside the facility, TESS will be encapsulated in the payload fairing. Photo credit: NASA

NASA's Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite, or TESS, is making strides toward its upcoming liftoff. The planet-hunting spacecraft is slated to launch from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station's Space Launch Complex 40 on Monday, April 16, aboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket.  Inside Kennedy Space Center's Payload Hazardous Servicing Facility, the TESS spacecraft was sealed within the Falcon 9 payload fairing in preparation for its move to the launch pad.
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The satellite is the next step in NASA's search for planets outside our solar system, known as exoplanets.

TESS is a NASA Astrophysics Explorer mission led and operated by MIT in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and managed by NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland. Dr. George Ricker of MIT's Kavli Institute for Astrophysics and Space Research serves as principal investigator for the mission. Additional partners include Orbital ATK, NASA's Ames Research Center, the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics and the Space Telescope Science Institute. More than a dozen universities, research institutes and observatories worldwide are participants in the mission. NASA's Launch Services Program is responsible for launch management.