May 2, 2013 • All spacecraft and instrument systems continue to perform normally. LDCM continues to collect more than 400 scenes per day and the U.S. Geological Survey Data Processing and Archive System continues to test its ability to process the data flow while waiting for the validation and delivery of on-orbit calibration, which converts raw data into reliable data products.
During this period, routine calibrations have continued along with Operational Land Imager and Thermal Infrared Sensor instrument imaging. Lunar calibrations were performed during last week’s full moon. As of April 24, 2013, the new system for scheduling image collections, the Collection Activity Planning Element is operational. On April 26, 2013, a 1.2-second thruster burn was conducted to maintain the observatory on the proper ground track and counteract drag on the satellite from the atmosphere.
Then on Saturday, April 27, 2013, LDCM began a 16-day imaging and calibration cycle that is a demonstration of the operational cycle the satellite will follow for the life of the mission. This dress rehearsal will test the entire image planning, collection and processing system at operational rates to verify everything is ready for handover to USGS for routine operations in late May.