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Open Access

VLBI observation of narrow bandwidth signals from the spacecraft

  • Fuyuhiko Kikuchi16Email author,
  • Yusuke Kono26,
  • Makoto Yoshikawa36,
  • Mamoru Sekido46,
  • Masafumi Ohnishi56,
  • Yasuhiro Murata36,
  • Jinsong Ping66,
  • Qinghui Liu66,
  • Koji Matsumoto66,
  • Kazuyoshi Asari66,
  • Seiitsu Tsuruta66,
  • Hideo Hanada26 and
  • Nobuyuki Kawano66
Earth, Planets and Space201456:BF03352546

Received: 7 May 2004

Accepted: 13 October 2004

Published: 22 June 2014


We carried out a series of VLBI observations of Nozomi by using a dedicated narrow bandwidth VLBI system. The three carrier waves with frequency interval of 515 kHz were recorded in 3 channels of the system and correlated by a software method. As a result of the correlation, the residual fringe phases of the main carrier wave are obtained for every 1.3 seconds. We can also continuously track them for 100 minutes. The variation of the residual fringe phase is +/− 150 degrees. Moreover, we can derive succesively the group delay for every 100 seconds by using these three carrier waves. The RMS of the group delays is 13 nsec and its average is well accorded with the delay determined by the range and Doppler measurements within an error of 2 nsec. Consequently, we confirmed the validity of the narrow bandwidth VLBI system, and it could be expected that this system, in addition to range and Doppler measurements, can be applied to three-dimensional tracking of a spacecraft and the precise gravity measurement of the Moon and the planets.

Key words

VLBIspacecraftnarrow bandwidthgroup delaySELENE