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March 4, 1999

Mars Climate Orbiter (MCO)

The MCO spacecraft successfully performed the second of four planned course corrections, designated TCM-2, on its nine month journey to Mars early this morning. At 5:35 a.m (PST), the spacecraft intiated a turn to the correct attitude for the maneuver, then fired its four maneuvering engines for 8.2 seconds, changing its speed by just 0.86 m/s (1.9 mph) to fine tune its flight path. The spacecraft performed as expected in all respects, returning to its nominal orientation for cruise within 10 minutes after completion of the maneuver. The next course correction is not scheduled until Jul. 25, two months prior to arrival.

Mars Polar Lander (MPL)

The meteorology sensor package was powered on for its second in-flight calibration and health check on Monday (Mar. 1) of this week. Telemetry from this activity was as expected. Otherwise, no activities were conducted on the lander, so that the flight team could focus on the development and execution of TCM-2 on the orbiter.

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