Measurements and Calibrations

  • James Miller
Part of the Space Technology Library book series (SPTL, volume 37)


The measurement system is a collection of instruments on board the spacecraft and on the ground that provide observations of the spacecraft motion with respect to Earth and specific target bodies. Instruments of this kind are the Deep Space Network (DSN), a solid-state imaging (SSI) device and a laser altimeter. The DSN tracking stations transmit radio frequency signals to the spacecraft and receive signals via the spacecraft transponder and antenna. The received signals constitute observations of range and Doppler data by conventional methods, and observations of angles by VLBI methods. A SSI allows optical observations of planets, satellites, comets and asteroids to be made against the background of the fixed stars and direct observation of landmarks. A laser altimeter bounces laser beams off the surface of a body and measures the round trip light time.


Target Body Doppler Data Tracking Stations Spacecraft Light-time Equation 
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© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • James Miller
    • 1
  1. 1.Porter RanchUSA

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