LTP12 will run from 2023-06-26T00:00:00 to 2023-09-25T00:00:00

Orbital context

Plots are in GSE (geocentric solar ecliptic) coordinates, so Earth is at [0,0], the Sun is at [1,0]. The plot is the projection of the orbit on the ecliptic plane. 

Animated Version: Orbit_GSE_2023H2.mp4

Definition for the grey shading representing downlink rates:

  • white = maximum downlink rate at which you can empty the SSMM in ~10 days
  • light-grey = SSMM fill state decreases with everyone operating at EID-A rates
  • mid-grey = SSMM fill state increases within RSW (10 instruments operating) and decreases outside RSW (IS-only breakeven rate < downlink rate < inside-RSW breakeven rate )
  • dark-grey = SSMM fill state increases with just IS operating (downlink rate < IS-only breakeven rate)

RS window placement

As agreed during the SWT-32, all 3 RS windows in the orbit H2-2023 will take place during LTP13 Q4-2023.

No RSWs in LTP12.

GAMs and conjunctions

  • Superior conjunction from 2023-09-14 11:06 to 2023-09-27 01:41 (ends in LTP13): no downlink will be possible during this period.
  • No GAM in this period.

Science and calibration planning

Coordinated science (and cross-calibration) campaigns:


  • 2023-06-27: Mercury coronal transit (min distance from disk center 1.37 Rsun), may be of interest to Metis. More details in Solar Orbiter Mercury Transit Calibration TNSolar Orbiter will offpoint to the south pole from 2023-06-27T07:13 to 21:39.

IS science and RS synoptic observations:

  • EPD & STIX observations with constant telemetry rates throughout the LTP

  • Other in situ instruments in high rate whenever within 0.7 au
  • Remote Sensing instruments run a low-rate synoptic mode throughout the LTP, SoloHI only starts observing when the spacecraft moves closer than 0.7 au from the Sun (on 2023-08-28) 

IS calibrations:

RS calibrations:

  • Metis star calibrations
  • PHI flatfield calibrations on 2023-06-26, 2023-08-08 and 2023-09-14

SOOP Kitchen plan

High-level (=MLP) plan:

Starting point for LTP planning in SOWG: (starting point for instrument teams, as discussed at SWT-36)

Final plan LTP12: (baseline 4, distributed on 12 May 2023)

Update: LTP12 (same plan) was re-released (baseline 5, distributed 7th June 2023) to V02. This was to

  • incorporate a missing comms roll to -7º at the end of the plan;
  • and account for shortened passes resulting from the Euclid launch window.

Reference material

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1 Comment

  1. Mercury approach towards transit (i.e. crossing METIS FOV) falls just into the start of LTP-12. With current orbit, METIS FOV period covers 26th June 2023 10:30 - 28th June 2023 22:30.