Deep Space 1


Also found in: Wikipedia.

Deep Space 1

An uncrewed NASA spacecraft, launched Oct. 1998 from Cape Canaveral, Florida, USA, on top of a Boeing Delta rocket. Its primary mission was to test advanced technologies that could lower the cost and risk involved in future scientific interplanetary exploration. Chief among these technologies was a new ion propulsion system utilizing atomic particles rather than conventional chemical fuel. An ion propulsion engine, first used for station-keeping by the PAS-5 telecommunications satellite in 1997, generates thrust by accelerating positively charged ions in a chamber of xenon through a series of gridded electrodes at one end of the chamber. Although such an engine produces only a tiny amount of thrust, the lack of atmospheric drag in outer space means that the thrust's effect builds up, allowing a probe to travel faster and farther. An ion propulsion engine is also very fuel-efficient, with a level of consumption about 10% of that of a conventional rocket engine. Thus, with an engine requiring less propellant than a normal spacecraft, Deep Space 1 was relatively light, its mass at liftoff, including fuel, being just 486.32 kg. By mid-August 2000, the ion propulsion engine had logged 200 days of operation. It continued functioning well until the probe was shut down in December 2001.

Deep Space 1 successfully tested 12 new technologies in all. Among the others were a Miniature Integrated Camera Spectrometer, low-power electronics, and a Small Deep Space Transponder. In the process the probe flew by two asteroids, (9969) Braille and 1992 KD. In September 1999 NASA decided to extend Deep Space 1's mission and sent it to encounter Comet Borelly. It successfully accomplished this activity in September 2001, returning valuable scientific data and excellent images. Deep Space 1 proved to be one of NASA's most successful low-budget missions, with total costs just short of $150 million.

References in periodicals archive ?
24, 1998, Deep Space 1 was launched, the spacecraft that reached the comet Borrelly in September 2001.
In a risky fly-by, NASA's aging Deep Space 1 spacecraft has navigated close enough to 'see, feel and smell' the rocky nucleus of a comet, giving scientists their best look ever at icy dust and gas thought to be as old as the solar system itself.
Infrared spectra taken by the Deep Space 1 spacecraft in late July suggest that Braille, only 2 kilometers long, is a chip off the old block 4 Vesta, the third largest asteroid in the solar system.
The Deep Space 1 mission has yielded valuable data that will shed more light on the kinds of asteroids that could someday veer onto a collision course with Earth, Jet Propulsion Laboratory scientists said Sunday.
Tanner EDA was involved in the Deep Space 1 project in 1998 where Deep Space 1 encountered Comet Borrelly and returned the best images and other data ever from a comet.
Known as Remote Agent, the craft-based computer program operated NASA's Deep Space 1 mission in a 2-day test.
Dubbed Deep Space 1, the spacecraft Rose is assembling is just one in an flotilla of about 20 small probes under design or construction at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory.
Last year, Boeing received NASA's Public Service Group Achievement Award for critical Mars missions including Mars Pathfinder, Mars Orbiter and Deep Space 1, all of which were launched aboard Delta II rockets.
Scientists meeting Tuesday at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's JPL acknowledged that the Deep Space 1 probe now undergoing tests in Pasadena is a bold gamble.
Department of Defense and NASA on such missions as MSTI-1, -2 and -3, New Millennium Deep Space 1, HESSI and Swift.
Harlequin LispWorks(R) is supporting the operation of the Remote Agent Experiment (RAX), activated this week on NASA's Deep Space 1 spacecraft.
This new design, able to use both X-Band and Ka-Band radio frequencies, is currently on the Deep Space 1 spacecraft of NASA's New Millennium Program and is scheduled for deployment on several deep space missions in the future including the Space Infrared Telescope Facility (SIRTF) and Mars Surveyor 2001.