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Mission Detail

GRACE Project

GRACE - Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment : Project

The GRACE Mission is being implemented in the PI-Mode, where the PI is directly responsible to NASA for the success of the mission. In order to ensure mission success, the PI has delegated a significant level of responsibility to the team partners to take advantage of their unique and proven capabilities. The Project Manager at JPL is responsible for executing the integrated management processes for the entire GRACE Project.

Mission Management Diagram Under direction of the PI, JPL is responsible for managing the NASA funding for the implementation elements the GRACE Project. JPL is supplying the satellites and the instrumentation package for the mission. The microwave satellite-to-satellite tracking instrument, which is integrated with a GPS receiver, has been developed by JPL and will be fabricated by Space Systems/Loral. The accelerometers are being purchased from the Office National d'Éstudes et de Recherches Aérospatiales (ONERA). Under contract to JPL, two identical GRACE satellites will be manufactured, tested, integrated and operated using existing facilities operated by the team partners. From their plant in Friedrichshafen, Germany, Astrium GmbH will deliver two mechanically and electrically integrated satellites including all software and instrumentation to SS/L in Palo Alto, California. At SS/L, the satellites will be balanced and tested to proto-flight qualification levels. The two satellites and the launch adapter will then be shipped to the launch facility at Plesetsk, where they will be integrated with the launch vehicle and launched into a near polar orbit. The DLR is providing the EUROCKOT launch vehicle and all launch services through a contract with industry. The Mission Operations System (MOS) for the GRACE mission will be provided by DLR. The German Space Operations Center (GSOC), which is part of DLR, will control the satellite flight operations and provide data downlink facilities. Raw data will be collected and archived by DLR's Remote Sensing Data Center (DFD) and provided as Level-0 data to JPL and GFZ for preparation of the Level-1 data products. The Level-1 data will be provided to CSR and GFZ for preparation of the Level-2 data products. The validated Level-1 and Level-2 data products, along with the pertinent ancillary data files will be delivered to PODAAC element of the EOSDIS and to the GFZ Data Center (GFZ/DC) for distribution to the scientific community.

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The GRACE mission is jointly implemented by NASA and DLR under
the NASA Earth System Science Pathfinder Program.

Last Modified: Wed Feb 11, 2004