[Spice_announce] Several Items

Acton, Charles H charles.h.acton at jpl.nasa.gov
Mon Jan 12 09:48:41 PST 2009

Dear SPICE Colleagues--

We have completed updates to the SPICE Tutorials collection, based on notes taken and comments received during our last SPICE Training Class in October. As is usually the case there are a significant number of updates, reflecting additions to the SPICE software, improved (or so we hope) explanations, and even a few corrections. If you have a local copy of the tutorials on your machine we encourage you to delete that set and download this current set. The date on the current tutorials is January 2009.

The tutorials are offered in both MS Office and PDF formats. In both formats you can obtain individual tutorials or a ZIP file that contains all of them. For the PDF format we also offer a single PDF file that is a merge of all the tutorials: this is convenient for searching for a particular term.

The PDF tutorials may be downloaded from the NAIF server here, using the HTTP protocol:


Any of the tutorials may be downloaded from the NAIF server from here, using the FTP protocol:


Just a reminder that the latest leapsecond took effect at midnight on January 1st. If you haven't already done so you should delete your old leapsecond kernel (LSK), named naif0008.tls (and any still older versions, should you have those) and install the current LSK:  naif0009.tls for Unix/Linux/Mac,  or naif0009.tls.pc for PC/Windows. The new LSK is fully backwards compatible-there is no need to save an older version. These LSKs are available from the generic_kernels area on the NAIF server at this location:


We anticipate releasing the next version of the Toolkit, Version N63, on or about March 1st, 2009. This version of the Toolkit will contain the first increment of the new "geometry finder" subsystem-subroutines used to find the times, or time spans, when certain space geometry conditions occur (e.g. occultation or minimum range), or when a particular geometry parameter is within a specified numeric range (e.g. phase angle is between 15 and 20 degrees).

In the N63 Toolkit we will also begin support for gfortran on PC and Mac, and we'll add some new 64-bit Icy (IDL) and Mice (MATLAB) packages.

At this point we have no specific plans for future training classes. If you are interested in NAIF conducting a training class, please let us know, including whether you are looking for the usual "beginners" class or a possible new "advanced" class.

During the first week of March NASA will conduct a Senior Review of the Planetary Data System and of NAIF. The review board will hear about NAIF's "results" to date and its plans for the future, and then will advise NASA management about if NAIF should continue on, and under what conditions and with what directions and recommendations. Should you have any suggestions or comments that might help the review board formulate its advice to NASA, consider forwarding these to the PDS/NAIF Program Executive,  Mr. William Knopf  ( william.knopf-1 at nasa.gov ). Any such comments would be kept anonymous. NAIF encourages the community to provide criticism to help ensure NASA funds will be well spent.

- The JPL-lead JUNO project is beginning work to deploy SPICE, with NAIF having the mission operations role.
- Deployment of SPICE on Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) will be delayed by about one year, owing to the recently announced MSL launch slip from 2009 to 2011. NAIF has the mission operations role for MSL.

Please direct any questions you may have to NAIF Manager Charles Acton.

Charles.H.Acton at jpl.nasa.gov                                               Phone (818) 354-3869
Supervisor, Navigation and Ancillary Information Group/JPL     Fax     (818) 393-6388
NAIF website: http://naif.jpl.nasa.gov
SPICE news:   http://naif.jpl.nasa.gov/mailman/listinfo/spice_announce

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