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26 February 2003 The Cassini gravitational wave experiment
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Abstract
Doppler tracking experiments using the earth and a distant spacecraft as separated test masses have been used for gravitational wave (GW) searches in the low-frequency band(~0.0001-0.1 Hz). The precision microwave tracking link continuously measures the relative dimensionless velocity, Δv/c, between the earth and the spacecraft. A GW incident of the systems produces a characteristic signature in the data, different from the signatures of the principal noises. For 40 days centered about its solar opposition in December 2001, the Cassini spacecraft was tracked in a search for low-frequncy GWs. Here we describe the GW experiment, including transfer functions of the signals and noises to the Doppler observable, and present noise statistics and compare them with the pre-experiment noise budget.
© (2003) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
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