The India Today’s OSINT team talks to Nasa’s citizen scientist as well as the space enthusiast Scott Tilley, who is working on his own orbital data of Chandrayaan-3 to compare to the data provided by Isro similar to the ‘watchdog astronomy’.
Scott Tilley has been keeping an archive of mission-related data
TLE is an interesting data set frequently used for satellite orbit visualizations
Isro is working with Nasa as well as the European Space Agency (ESA)
Dipti Yadav thought about how it’s to follow space satellites. Or remember the times you pondered the use of the Doppler effect in high school and then forgot about it?
We are here in a compelling story about how space lovers all over the globe are following India’s Chandrayaan-3.
The spacecraft is ready to undergo Translunar Injection on August 1 just a few days after the last Earth-bound operation that took place on July 25.
The rover and the lander will likely touch down on the lunar surface on August 23. The motor module (launch vehicle) will remain in the moon’s orbit in order to serve as a relay satellite to communicate and relay lunar surface information onto Earth.
On the 20th of July, as Chandrayaan-3 (CH3) was able to successfully complete its fourth orbit maneuver German-based amateur radio satellite organization AMSAT-DL monitored the spacecraft with Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) Horizons tracker data.
What is NASA’s CITIZEN SCIENTIST TRACKING the CHANDRAYAAN-3 RANGE?
Scott Tilley, who prefers calling himself an amateur astronomer is keeping the mission’s data archives of the collected data from the TLE (Two-Line Element) information from CH3 in his GitHub for each of us to examine the orbital position variations that the satellite.
There is also his own WordPress page that is dedicated to tracking satellites that are mysterious.
Also Read: Isro PSLV-C56 launches on Sunday: What exactly will India communicate to space at this moment?
In 2018, StarLink’s ZUMA satellite attracted his attention as he was tracking ZUMA with Doppler shift information and a Doppler shift, he came across another object that was in a greater orbital altitude than ZUMA. After further investigation it was discovered to be Nasa’s prior space mission, dubbed the IMAGE mission, which had fallen out of contact with its launch station. It was a eureka moment, indeed. the scientist emailed someone of Nasa scientists, which later earned him the status of “citizen scientist”.
The Doppler effect can be described as an obvious shift in the frequency of the satellite’s radio transmitter whenever it comes close, crosses by, or leaves. This aids in the calculation of the distance between a satellite broadcasting in space, as well as a radio receiver located on the ground.
In order to determine the current location for Chandrayaan-3, Scott employs Doppler frequency shift data and shows it as a graph relative to the time to produce the Doppler curve.
When asked about what Nasa’s JPL contributes to the mooncraft tracking of Isro and mooncraft track monitoring, he said “In the situation of Chandrayaan-3 the data from pre-launch that was used to describe the whole mission was supplied the JPL Horizons by Isro. It turned out that the data might not be completely precise, which is not uncommon since things may change once sharing the information. After the second apogee-raising fire, the details shared on JPL Horizons changed, improving the precision of previous missions and missing the burn that was to come, despite the fact that the data was projecting past the actual incident. Most likely, it was a simple error of someone.”
Concerning the degree of accuracy of his method, he explained “My methods aren’t any more precise. They’re precise enough to give a fair conclusion about the course of a spacecraft like Chandrayaan-3. If I were to say that a fire didn’t take place or occur in a way contrary to the way they described it I’d likely to notice quickly and may make statements which were previously true about the events.”
How are OTHER SPACE Enthusiasts Tracking CHANDRAYAAN-3?
TLE is an intriguing data source, frequently used for satellite orbit visualizations, using 3D geospatial platforms such as Cesium. It’s a type of data that contains vital data about satellites and provides the latest information about their orbital location. CelesTrak can be considered an excellent resource for obtaining TLE information from artificial satellites.
As part of a plan to create a space portal alertness, Indraprastha Institute of Information Technology has added Chandrayaan-3’s data from the TLE to allow the public to easily track its orbital positions without any effort. Although, as of now this data has been input manually to the website.
In addition, various technology such as SDR (Software Defined Radio) and various types of antennas can be used for capturing telemetry data from satellites that are hovering in the sky. These data could contain valuable information based on the type of satellite. Telemetry is the totality of data the satellite sends to the ground station.
In some cases, if there’s an internal camera on spacecraft, the refining of signals gathered by an antenna using various software (e.g. WXtoImg, a program for decoding meteorological satellite telemetry) will result in an array of data captured by satellites during its celestial round.
THIS. IS. JUST. AWESOME. !!
This video was decoded using the high-speed downlink of 8455MHz that the @uhf_satcom team received last night. The hard work put into the decoder as well as data analysis paid off at the end!
The amount of processing software needed will depend on the degree of precision of the information. The refining process generated by satellites that capture high-resolution images, for example, can be more difficult than a simpler satellite data set.
Amateur cosmic enthusiasts typically kick off their journey of tracking by analyzing the telemetry from weather satellites or radio amateur satellites (also named OSCARs) by using an antenna made from wood and an incredibly cheap SDR.
Many are eagerly awaiting to look at the images gallery in Chandrayaan-3’s service module the moment they are released by Isro.
THE MONITORING OF SATELLITES AND DECODING INFORMATION
It is the NORAD ID (also called SATCAT, or the satellite catalog number) utilized to trace the movement of spacecraft comprises five digits that are associated with both – the satellite that is the mother along with a launch rocket.
In this particular case the Chandrayaan-3 vehicle and its propulsion vehicle, LVM-3, are the numbers assigned to them chronologically with 57321 and 57320, respectively.
In contrast, the COSPAR ID (also known as International Designator) is an international identification code that is assigned to celestial objects. It begins with the year of launch and then three numbers that identify the date of launch for that year and the name of the launch object.