Operational Issues Session Summary
M. Pearlman and G. Kirchner
|Title of Paper
|Data Yield of the ILRS Global Network Over The Past Decade
|The ILRS Report Card and Performance Charts
Korea's First Satellite for Satellite Laser Ranging
|EUROLAS Real Time Status Exchange
|CDDIS Archive Structure Supporting Laser Ranging Data and Products
|ILRS Tracking Support of GP-B
|The MICROSCOPE Mission
|ALOS Overview: Time-restricted operation
|Status of the NASA SLR Network
|ILRS Mission Support
The Session on Operational Issues was a catchall for items not addressed
Erricos Pavlis briefed us on his poster on the last 10 years of
Lageos data, noting the weekend effect and the apparent reduction
in data starting in 2004, probably due to the NASA reductions. Mark
Torrence gave a short presentation on the progress at RITSS to resurrect
the station data report card. Maury Dube gave a briefing on his poster
on the new data structure being adopted by the data centers.
Werner Gurtner reviewed the status of the Real Time Station Status
Exchange. A number of stations have incorporated it into their operations;
all stations should seriously consider participation. David Carter
gave us a rundown on the NASA budget reductions; data yield and coverage
have been seriously impacted as has headquarters operations, but
there is some optimism for improvement in FY 2005.
Jun Ho Lee gave us some background on the Korean Research Center
(Satrac) and a new solar research and engineering test bed satellite
that is being considered for launch in the 2005-7 timeframe with
retros; some concern about the 300km by 700km orbit. Peter Shelus
reported on GP-B frame dragging relativity experiment; the program
is scheduled to last a minimum of 16 months with SLR tracking support
to commence in July. The spacecraft geometry limits SLR opportunities;
predictions and viewing tables being organized. Richard Biancale
gave a presentation on the French Microscope Mission, a drag free
microsatellite for as test of Equivalence Principle planned for launch
on 2006. The mission, which is extremely weight limited, would rely
on SLR tracking for 1-meter orbits for the relativity experiment.
A secondary experiment is planned to measure atmospheric helium density.
A final decision on the mission is anticipated in July.
Hiroo Kunimori gave a presentation on the remote sensing ALOS mission,
which is now scheduled for launch by JAXA in 2005. On-board sensors
are vulnerable to SLR and scheduling will require very careful planning.
Peter Shelus reported that ICESat, with its laser altimeter, is being
tracked on a limited basis by a few stations; the sensors are very
vulnerable to SLR and methods of automated protection are being examined.
Peter also reported the status on a number of other missions. Meteor-3M
continues to rely on SLR since its radio system failed, but tracking
is weak from only a few stations. Stations are asked to make a little
more effort. GFO-1 is back in operation after solar activity hiatus;
once again this satellite depends solely on SLR for tracking. Since
the PRARE operations have been reduced, ERS-2 is now placing even
greater dependence on SLR while the mission is now planned to continue
through 2005. The stations have been consistently getting more data
on Topex/Poseidon than Jason probably due to the comparative link
margins; T/P mission has recently assumed stow mode while some systems
problems are being addressed. The Grace and Champ Missions continue
to rely on SLR for GPS and SST validation, scale, and gravity field
model development. The complex of passive satellites (Lageos, Starlette,
Stella, BE-C, etc.) are still very fundamental tools for the recovery
of the long period gravity field terms and time-varying gravity field
components. SLR is still the most accurate technique for the definition
of radial orbit component for both geodynamics and altimetry missions.