Launch: October 2004
The New Millennium Program's Space Technology 6 Project has validated two advanced, experimental technologies that will free the spacecraft of the future from their need for a continuous link with the ground.
The New Millennium Program's Space Technology 6 (ST6) Project hosts two experimental technologies, Autonomous Sciencecraft Experiment (Sciencecraft) and Inertial Stellar Compass (Compass), to be flight tested in the harsh "laboratory" of space. When successfully validated, these technologies——equipped with artificial intelligence capabilities——will improve a spacecraft's ability to:
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- make intelligent decisions on what information to gather and what to send back to the ground
- determine its attitude and adjust its pointing (where it is aimed)