The European Space Operations Centre (ESOC) in Darmstadt provides the Operations Control Centre (OCC) for Rosetta. It controls the spacecraft via ESA's New Norcia 35 m ground station near Perth, with additional support during the spacecraft activation, early commissioning and near-Earth phases provided by the ESA 15 m ground station in Kourou.
Rosetta Mission Operations
Ground Segment and Mission Operations
The Rosetta ground segment provides capabilities for monitoring and control of the Rosetta spacecraft and payload during all mission phases, as well as for the reception, archiving and distribution of payload instrument data. The ground segment is composed of:
- Ground Station and Communications Network performing telemetry, telecommand and tracking operations within the S/X-band frequencies. The ground station network used throughout all mission phases is shown below. Rosetta is controlled via the ESA Perth 35 m station. During critical mission phases (such as launch and planet swing-bys) it will be supported for tracking, telemetry and command by other ESA ground stations at Kourou and Cebreros, and by the NASA Deep Space Network (DSN) 34 m/70 m stations at Madrid, Spain, and Goldstone, USA.
Ground Station Network
- Rosetta Mission Operations Centre (RMOC) located at ESOC, Darmstadt (Germany), including:
|- ||The Rosetta Mission Control System, to support with both hardware and software, the data processing tasks essential for controlling the mission, as well as spacecraft performance evaluation and software validation|
|- ||The Rosetta Data Disposition System, supporting the acquisition and interim storage of raw scientific data (to be accessible together with raw housekeeping and auxiliary data from PIs at remote locations), and distributing the raw data|
|- ||The Rosetta Mission Planning System, supporting command request handling and the planning and scheduling of spacecraft/payload operations|
|- ||The Flight Dynamics System, supporting all activities related to attitude and orbit determination and prediction, preparation of slew and orbit manoeuvres, spacecraft dynamics evaluation and navigation in general|
|- ||The Spacecraft Simulator, to support procedure validation, operator training, and the simulation campaign before each major phase of the mission|
- Rosetta Science Operations Centre (RSOC), to support scientific mission planning. It merges instrument command requests to arrive at a consolidated schedule to submit to RMOC. RSOC also makes pre-processed scientific data and the scientific data archive available to the scientific community
- General Purpose Communication Network, providing the support services for access to test data obtained during the spacecraft integration and test programme, submittal of command requests to the ESOC/RMOC, retrieval of quick look mission products kept at ESOC
Spacecraft operations during all mission phases (lasting overall about 10.5 years) will be 'off-line'. There will be communication black-out periods of up to eight months duration, and the spacecraft will be put into a resource saving mode for about 2.5 years from May 2011 to January 2014. The communication turn-around between ground and the Rosetta spacecraft will be up to 100 minutes. The spacecraft and payload have therefore been made able to provide on-board capabilities to conduct corrective actions at short notice in case of on-board anomalies.
Operation of the scientific instruments on-board of the Rosetta spacecraft is defined by the Investigator teams. Primary responsibility for developing the payload operations strategy for the Rosetta Scientific Mission lies with the Rosetta Science Working Team. The Rosetta Science Operation Centre (RSOC) supports the Rosetta Project Scientist in scientific operations.