Welcome to Luciano Iess's Homepage

On the left: the JUNO mission (NASA) was launched on 5 agosto 2011 e and it will be orbited around Jupiter in 2017. Its main purposes are the study of the atmosphere and of the interna structure of the planet. On the centre: artist view of the Cassini and Huygens probes at Saturn. On the right: Saturn almost at equinox, as seen from Cassini (ISS Cassini).


Space missions and systems 2014/2015- First homework:




The solution (a pdf file) and the source code must be emailed by Sunday Apr. 19 21:59 UTC to luciano.iess@uniroma1.it AND paolo.racioppa@uniroma1.it. NO EXCEPTIONS!

Suggestions and remarks: Be concise and go right to the point. Plots convey information very effectively. Including a working source code is mandatory.



Space missions and systems 2013/2014

*** MSS test n.2:

List of received homeworks

Students admitted to the exam in simplified mode  


MSS 2014 - Home test n. 2 

Email the code and the report to luciano.iess@uniroma1.it AND mircojunior.mariani@uniroma1.it by Friday May 30 23:59:59.

Students passing both home tests (or the challenge and the second test) will be entitled to take the exam in a simplified mode.

Clarification #1: you may neglect the torque variations due to the eclipses.

Clarification #2: if needed, you may use this matlab routine to solve Kepler's equation.  

Clarification #3: The angular momentum storage capacity is 29.32 N-m-s and not 22.6 N-m-s.

Clarification #4: The minimum time requirement has to be intended loosely. Any design of the control system attaining the required attitude in a reasonable time is acceptable.



*** Challenge MSS 2014 - Results

- Mario Tindaro Migliorino - 2 pt.

- Michela Archi - 1 pt.

- Renato Volpe - 1 pt.

- Filippo Silvestrucci - 1 pt.

- Andrea Antolino - 1 pt.

Congratulations to all participants. The solution will be presented on Monday May 19, 1:30 pm, at the Radio Science Lab. 


*** Guest Lectures on Space Missions:

R.T. Mitchell, Jet Propulsion Laboratory (ret.), Former Project Manager of the Galileo and Cassini missions 

- Tuesday May 13, 8:30-10:00 am, room 39

- Wednesday May 13, 12:00-1:30 pm, room 39

- Thursday May 13, 10:15-11:45 am, room *********  39  ********

Downoad Slides (zipped file)



Challenge MSS 2014  ****WARNING (May 9, h.19:30) : The first guess value of the GM must be set to 401500 km3/s2 and not to 398500 km3/s2 as reported in the text of the challenge. ****

Observables:   track_GS1.txt    track_GS2.txt

Email the code and the report to luciano.iess@uniroma1.it AND paolo.racioppa@uniroma1.it by Sunday May 11 23:59:59 UTC.

Students who did not pass the first test can take part in the challenge. The challenge is valid as a backup test. The deadline is unchanged (no extension this time).


Home Test 1 (revised) (students passing both tests are eligible to take the final exam in a simplified mode)

Observable quantities (trackfile.txt) 

*** Email the code (Matlab, Fortran, C ...) and a short note containing the procedure, the solution and the plots  to luciano.iess@uniroma1.it AND paolo.racioppa@uniroma1.it by midnight Sunday Apr. 27, 2014.  

*** Updated List of received reports by midnight Sunday Apr. 27, 2014 ***

List of Received Reports (Updated)

*** Home Test 1 Results ***

Home Test 1 Results

Students who did not pass the first test can take part in the challenge. The challenge is valid as a backup test.


** Follow the link on the side to know the dates of examination sessions.

** Dates of home tests and competition:

     - Apr. 23-27 (home test 1)

     - May. 20-24 (home test 2)

     - May 9-11 (competition)


** Space Environment and Instrumentation: The updated class notes 

- Space_Env_Instr_2014_1.pdf

- Space_Env_Instr_2014_2.pdf

- phase_amplitude.m (matlab file)

- quadrupole_eig.m (matlab file)

may be downloaded from the link Class Notes.


** Space Missions and Systems: The updated class notes

- Missioni_Sist_Spa_0_2014.pdf

- Missioni_Sist_Spa_1_2014.pdf

- Missioni_Sist_Spa_2_2014.pdf  (only minor typos corrected)

- Missioni_Sist_Spa_3_2014.pdf  (some typos corrected)

may be downloaded from the link Class Notes. Please consider also the auxiliary slides Normal_Distributions.pdf.



For updated information you may follow me on Twitter (luciano_iess)


*** Seminars at Beijing Institute of Tracking and Telecommunications Technology (BITTT):

Seminar 1: Deep Space Navigation Systems: Where Do We Stand?

Seminar 2: The European Delta-DOR Correlator

Seminar 3: BepiColombo, the ESA Mission To Mercury; MORE: Geodesy, Geophysics, Navigation

Seminar 4 and 5: The Scientific Use of Deep Space Tracking Systems; Radio Science in Deep Space Missions

***Tour of Robledo's DNS facilities. The visit to the Robledo and Cebreros tracking complexes was an interesting and profitable experience for all of us. Follow the link to see some photos. 


Frequently Asked Question (FAQ)



Relativity in the Global positioning System by N. Ashby

The rotation of LAGEOS

Titan, Saturn and the Rings