Space

CAPSTONE Spacecraft in Safe Mode After Trajectory Correction Maneuver

The Cislunar Autonomous Positioning System Technology Operations and Navigation Experiment, or CAPSTONE, is a CubeSat that will fly a unique orbit around the Moon intended for NASA’s future Artemis lunar outpost Gateway. Its six-month mission will help launch a new era of deep space exploration. Credit: NASA Ames Research Center

On Thursday evening, September 8, the CAPSTONE spacecraft executed a planned trajectory correction maneuver. CAPSTONE mission controllers have since obtained telemetry confirming that an issue put the spacecraft in safe mode near the end of the maneuver.

Currently, the CAPSTONE operations mission team has good knowledge of the state and status of the spacecraft. They are in contact with the spacecraft and working towards a solution with support from the Deep Space Network. Additional updates will be provided as they become available.

Rocket Lab successfully launched CAPSTONE on a historic pathfinding mission to the moon to support NASA’s Artemis program on June 28. It is a CubeSat designed to test a unique lunar orbit, which is intended in the future for Gateway, a lunar space station.

CAPSTONE – short for Cislunar Autonomous Positioning System Technology Operations and Navigation Experiment – is owned by Advanced Space on behalf of NASA. The spacecraft was designed and built by Terran Orbital. Operations are performed jointly by teams at Advanced Space and Terran Orbital.

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