OFJ Field Journal from Jim Erickson - 10/16/95
PRIORITIZING SCIENCE DATAMonday we spent the day in a science review. The morning was dedicated to prioritizing (saying how important something is) all the current problems in the "phase 2" software. The phase 2 software is used after the spacecraft is placed in orbit and performs data compression on the science data before sending it back to earth. It's called phase 2 because phase 0 was original operations, phase 1 was modifications to perform Jupiter arrival, and phase 2 was for after arrival. The prioritizing is to let the software programmers know which problems are most serious and should therefore get fixed first.
The second part of the day was a workshop for the Principal Investigators (our scientists) to get together and think about what the spacecraft could usefully do in the event that our tape recorder was permanently broken. They discussed possible further changes to the compression software (which would be called phase 3), and identified what data we could still get.
Thursday we approved a rebuilt early Jupiter approach sequence of computer commands (JAA - Jupiter Approach A) which removed all tape recorder use. Until we know that the tape recorder can be used, we can't risk scheduling it for use by the sequences. The modified sequence of commands will be sent to the spacecraft on Sunday.
Throughout the week we've been busy re-planning what to do during the rest of Jupiter approach and arrival day. We've been asking ourselves "what-if" questions. What if we can't use the recorder? Can we protect the relay of probe data? What if we can use the recorder? What is the safest way to use it? Safety of the spacecraft, and then safety of the probe data is uppermost in every one's mind. Friday afternoon we will begin troubleshooting the tape recorder to provide some answers.