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Operations CXO Status Report

Friday 30 October 2020 9.00am EDT

During the last week Chandra completed the observing schedule as planned.

A real-time procedure was executed on Oct 25 to perform a controlled ramp-up of the HRC-S detector high voltage, as part of an HRC-S check-out observation of AR Lac. The HRC microchannel plate was slowly ramped up to same values as used by the A side electronics. A live image was accumulated and AR Lac was easily seen with approximately the expected count rate. The real-time procedure and the observation ran nominally and the observation data disclosed no performance concerns.

Real-time procedures were executed on Oct 29 to uplink two flight software patches. The first patch updated onboard values to prevent the eclipse flag from inadvertently toggling TRUE while the spacecraft is in sunlight; the update was needed due to expected long-term changes in solar array characteristics. The second patch updated onboard values of the Electrical Power Subsystem Current Monitor Threshold to prevent spurious disablement of a battery.

Additional real-time procedures were executed during each ground contact to reset the DSN Outage Dead Man Load.

Of note this week was the Chandra Quarterly Review conducted on Oct 27 by teleconference.

Chandra press and image releases were issued on Oct 30 featuring Chandra observations of Barnard's Star, combined with observations from NASA's Hubble Space Telescope. Barnard's Star, one of the closest stars to Earth at a distance of only 6 light years, is a red dwarf, a type of star that is long-lived and common in the Galaxy. The new observations concluded that about 25% of the time, Barnard's Star unleashes scorching flares, which may damage the atmospheres of planets closely orbiting it. This study adds to evidence that red dwarfs may present serious challenges for life on their planets. For details, see:

The schedule of targets for the next week is shown below and includes an observation of AT2020xnd, which was accepted as a Target of Opportunity on Oct 26 and is coordinated with NuSTAR, an observation of IGRJ17494-3030, which was accepted as a Target of Opportunity on Oct 27, an observation of RXJ1756.4+5235, which was accepted as a Director's Discretionary Time Target of Opportunity on Sep 28, an observation of gx5-1 coordinated with NuSTAR and NICER, and an observation of sctX-1 coordinated with NuSTAR.

        Radiation Belts                     Nov  1
        SNR0509-67.5           ACIS-S
        J0252-0503             ACIS-S       Nov  2
        M33-North              ACIS-I
        ArLac (9 Obs)          HRC-I
        NGC4839                ACIS-I
        ArLac (12 Obs)         HRC-I        Nov  3
        HD150706               HRC-I
        IGRJ17494-3030         ACIS-S
        PSOJ030947.49+27175    ACIS-S
        NGC4839                ACIS-I
        PSOJ030947.49+27175    ACIS-S
        Radiation Belts                     Nov  4
        AT2020xnd              ACIS-S
        gx5-1                  ACIS-S/HETG
        RXJ1756.4+5235         ACIS-S
        J0950+5128             ACIS-S       Nov  5
        PSOJ030947.49+27175    ACIS-S
        NGC1194                ACIS-S
        SNR0509-67.5           ACIS-S
        PSOJ030947.49+27175    ACIS-S       Nov  6
        Radiation Belts
        RBS797                 ACIS-S       Nov  7
        PSOJ030947.49+27175    ACIS-S
        NSA88260               ACIS-S
        NGC4839                ACIS-I
        SN2010br               ACIS-S
        OrionNebulaCluster     ACIS-S/HETG  Nov  8
        2MASSJ04493709-5352    ACIS-S
        GaiaDR232767383752     ACIS-S
        sctX-1                 ACIS-S
        Radiation Belts                     Nov  9


All spacecraft subsystems continued to support nominal operations.

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