ISEE-3 Update: Trajectory Correction Maneuver

Dennis Wingo writes:

As many of you know, last week we fired the thrusters on ISEE-3 to do a spin-up burn. Before the burn (actually 11 pulses on the spacecraft’s hydrazine thrusters) the spin rate of ISEE-3 was 19.16 rpm. After spin-up burn it was 19.76 rpm. The original mission specifications for ISEE-3 called for a spin rate of 19.75 +/- 0.2 rpm. In other words: bullseye.

If all goes according to plan on Tuesday, 8 July, we will conduct the Trajectory Correction Maneuver (TCM). This will require a much longer firing of the spacecraft’s thrusters. Our window at Arecibo opens at 12:42 pm EDT and extends until 3:29 pm EDT. If the burn is a success we will follow up with another ranging session using the DSN to get an exact measure of the spacecraft’s position, trajectory, and speed. After that we should be good to go for our lunar flyby on 10 August.

Stay up to date on our progress by checking these links — (we’ll live tweet the whole process)

Oh yes: our online store is now open at — and we are working on getting all of your donation gifts out to you as soon as possible.

Thanks again for your support!

P.S. ISEE-3 is already doing science! See

13 thoughts on “ISEE-3 Update: Trajectory Correction Maneuver

  1. Been following on twitter and holding my breath along with everyone else. As proved with ISEE3, there’s a lot to be said for keeping a satellite simple.

  2. Hey Dennis,
    You guys are giving me the same kind of positive can- do hope for the future that I had when I was a kid and the Mercury missions were lifting off.
    Thanks so very much!

  3. What a hoot! Just a way fun, impressive, and creative adventure. Too cool, but still for school!
    May favor shine upon you all.

  4. I went into engineering study after Sputnik 1 so I’ve been around for the whole adventure. Practical considerations of employment (few jobs at the time in the space industry) steered me into geology and mining but I’ve followed developments all along. The ISEE-3 is pretty much as exciting to me as most of what has been done since Sputnik. The moon landings and the planet flybys, of course, were the glitziest projects but contacting, rebooting and redeploying an old space bird is the most exciting since then. Great stuff. I feel a bit rebooted myself.

  5. The Right Stuff. That was the movie title I couldn’t remember. Thanks for jogging my memory, Gary. This is such in the tradition of our other great space adventures. Ingenuity, well-designed and built craft that go above and beyond, etc.

  6. Dennis, I have to agree with posters here that this is incredible stuff. Inspirational and nostalgic on many levels. Thank you and your team mates!!!

  7. Brilliant work. Keep the updates coming.
    Thanks to Anthony for allowing these posts.

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