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4 August 2010 Managing the development of the Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer mission
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The Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE), a NASA Medium-Class Explorer (MIDEX) mission, is surveying the entire sky in four bands from 3.4 to 22 microns with a sensitivity hundreds to hundreds of thousands times better than previous all-sky surveys at these wavelengths. The single WISE instrument consists of a 40 cm three-mirror anastigmatic telescope, a two-stage solid hydrogen cryostat, a scan mirror mechanism, and reimaging optics giving 6" resolution (fullwidth- half-maximum). WISE was placed into a Sun-synchronous polar orbit on a Delta II 7320 launch vehicle on December 14, 2009. NASA selected WISE as a MIDEX in 2002 following a rigorous competitive selection process. To gain further confidence in WISE, NASA extended the development period one year with an option to cancel the mission if certain criteria were not met. MIDEX missions are led by the principal investigator who in this case delegated day-today management to the project manager. With a cost cap and relatively short development schedule, it was essential for all WISE partners to work seamlessly together. This was accomplished with an integrated management team representing all key partners and disciplines. The project was developed on budget and on schedule in spite of the need to surmount significant technical challenges. This paper describes our management approach, key challenges and critical decisions made. Results are described from a programmatic, technical and scientific point of view. Lessons learned are offered for projects of this type.
© (2010) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
William Irace, Roc Cutri, Valerie Duval, Peter Eisenhardt, John Elwell, George Greanias, Ingolf Heinrichsen, Joan Howard, Feng-Chuan Liu, Donald Royer, and Edward L. Wright "Managing the development of the Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer mission", Proc. SPIE 7738, Modeling, Systems Engineering, and Project Management for Astronomy IV, 77380O (4 August 2010);


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