Venus Express aerobraking: quick update 18 July

Venus Express aerobraking Credit: ESA

Venus Express aerobraking Credit: ESA

Today’s update on the orbit raising manoeuvres of Venus Express, following the aerobraking campaign, is provided by acting spacecraft operations manager Joerg Fischer:

Everything appears nominal so far. We have completed eight orbit correct manoeuvres (OCMs), each raising the pericentre by approximately 25 km. Estimated pericentre height at the moment is ~300 km. There are seven more OCMs to come to bring us to the target pericentre height of ~460 km.

The spacecraft is in fantastic shape, no degradation of any unit has been seen. A battery deep discharge test was performed. No degradation compared to before the aerobraking campaign was found.

Estimated fuel reserve after completion of all OCMs is 5.42 kg oxidiser and 3.23 kg fuel (note this is only an estimate based on the dead reckoning processing of Flight Dynamics).

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