Volume 593, September 2016
|Number of page(s)||10|
|Published online||06 September 2016|
Planetary Radio Interferometry and Doppler Experiment (PRIDE) technique: A test case of the Mars Express Phobos fly-by
1 California Institute of
Technology, 1200 E California
Blvd, Pasadena, CA 91125, USA
2 Joint Institute for VLBI ERIC, PO Box 2, 7990 AA Dwingeloo, The Netherlands
3 Sternberg Astronomical Institute, Lomonosov Moscow State University, Universitetsky av. 13, 119991 Moscow, Russia
4 ASTRON, The Netherlands Institute for Radio Astronomy, Postbus 2, 7990 AA, Dwingeloo, The Netherlands
5 Aalto University, School of Electrical Engineering, Department of Radio Science and Engineering, 02150 Espoo, Finland
6 Department of Astrodynamics and Space Missions, Delft University of Technology, 2629 HS Delft, The Netherlands
7 Shanghai Astronomical Observatory, 80 Nandan Road, 200030 Shanghai, PR China
8 Carnegie Mellon University, 5000 Forbes Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15213, USA
9 Institute for Space Sciences, Atomistilor 409, PO Box MG-23, 077125 Bucharest-Magurele, Romania
10 Royal Observatory of Belgium, Ringlaan 3, 1180 Brussels, Belgium
11 CNES/GRGS, OMP 14 avenue Édouard Belin 31400 Toulouse, France
12 IMCCE, Observatoire de Paris, PSL Research University, CNRS-UMR 8028 du CNRS, UPMC, Lille-1, 77 Av. Denfert-Rochereau, 75014 Paris, France
13 Observatorio de Yebes (IGN), Apartado 148, 19180 Guadalajara, Spain
14 Hartebeesthoek Radio Astronomy Observatory, 1740 Krugersdorp, South Africa
15 Federal Agency for Cartography and Geodesy, Geodetic Observatory of Wettzell, 60598 Frankfurt Am Main, Germany
16 Department of Earth and Space Sciences, Chalmers University of Technology, Onsala Space Observatory, 439 92 Onsala, Sweden
17 National Institute for Astrophysics, Radio Astronomy Institute, Radio Observatory Medicina, 75500 Medicina, Italy
18 Institute of Applied Astronomy, Russian Academy of Sciences, Kutuzova Embankment 10, 191187 Saint-Petersburg, Russia
19 School of Physical Sciences, University of Tasmania, Private Bag 37, 7001 Hobart, Australia
20 CSIRO Astronomy and Space Science, Australia Telescope National Facility, Narrabri NSW 2390, Australia
21 Institute for Radio Astronomy and Space Research, Auckland University of Technology, Private Bag 92006, 1142 Auckland, New Zealand
22 Xinjiang Astronomical Observatory, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 830011 Urumqi, PR China
23 Yunnan Astronomical Observatory, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 650011 Kunming, PR China
24 Metsähovi Radio Observatory, Aalto University, 02540 Kylmälä, Finland
25 European Space Agency, ESA/ESTEC Scientific Support Office, 2200AG Noordwijk, The Netherlands
Accepted: 31 May 2016
Context. The closest ever fly-by of the Martian moon Phobos, performed by the European Space Agency’s Mars Express spacecraft, gives a unique opportunity to sharpen and test the Planetary Radio Interferometry and Doppler Experiments (PRIDE) technique in the interest of studying planet–satellite systems.
Aims. The aim of this work is to demonstrate a technique of providing high precision positional and Doppler measurements of planetary spacecraft using the Mars Express spacecraft. The technique will be used in the framework of Planetary Radio Interferometry and Doppler Experiments in various planetary missions, in particular in fly-by mode.
Methods. We advanced a novel approach to spacecraft data processing using the techniques of Doppler and phase-referenced very long baseline interferometry spacecraft tracking.
Results. We achieved, on average, mHz precision (30 μm/s at a 10 s integration time) for radial three-way Doppler estimates and sub-nanoradian precision for lateral position measurements, which in a linear measure (at a distance of 1.4 AU) corresponds to ~50 m.
Key words: techniques: interferometric / techniques: miscellaneous / methods: data analysis / astrometry
© ESO, 2016
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