News:   •  Restaurants   •  Library Catalog   •  Library Activities  •  History   •  Facebook / X/Twitter / RSS

Monrovia - Space Hub

Messenger Spacecraft (NASA image)

Communicating with America's unmanned spacecraft is coordinated right from Monrovia, according to Dawn Medeiros, a project manager with ITT Systems for the government's Deep Space Network.

Medeiros, speaking at the monthly Monrovia Coordinating Council, said the Monrovia facility, at 1400 S. Shamrock Avenue, is 8.5 years into a 10-year contract with JPL to administer and maintain the space communications system. There are communications facilities around the world, but in California this includes running an office at JPL and taking care of the massive antennas at the Goldstone facility located at Ft. Irwin, near Barstow.

Among the 50-60 spacecraft ITT tracks is the ancient, will-not-die Voyager, which is now 15 billion kilometers away. It takes 29 hours for a round-trip signal to reach out to Voyager and for the reply to come back.

And coming up soon: the Messenger spacecraft, which should arrive at Mercury and begin orbiting the planet on March 18 of this year.

- Brad Haugaard

No comments:

Post a Comment