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Stardust completes Earth flyby
Posted: Mon, Jan 15, 2001, 4:36 PM ET (2136 GMT)
Stardust Earth flyby NASA's Stardust spacecraft made a gravity-assist swingby of Earth early Monday en route to comet Wild-2. The spacecraft came 6,012 km from the Earth at 6:16 am EST (1116 GMT) Monday, and was successfully tracked by NASA's Deep Space Network and observed by astronomers in Australia, Hawaii and California. All systems on the spacecraft are working normally, according to a JPL status report issued Monday afternoon. Stardust will pass 98,000 km from the Moon later Monday; a navigation camera on the spacecraft will take some images of it for calibration purposes. The flyby puts Stardust on course for its January 2004 flyby of comet Wild-2 and a return to Earth two years later.
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