April 13, 2024

NASA shares first photos of the Hubble Space Telescope after the mysterious stumble

The Hubble Space Telescope Has come back, there are pictures on NASA to prove it.

The Earth-orbiting lab went offline on June 13 and remained intact for more than a month, while engineers struggled to identify a mysterious obstacle. NASA has not yet announced exactly what caused the problem, but the agency’s engineers managed Bring the Hubble back online By activating some of its backup hardware on Thursday.

“I was very worried,” said Thomas Surbuchen, NASA’s co – executive Video interview on Friday With Encinga Dahl leading the Hubble team through the adjustment. “We all know it’s more dangerous than it sounds.”

Hubble slowly reloaded its science tools over the weekend and conducted computer tests to make sure everything was still working. Took its first pictures since the whole failure began.

The telescope focused its lens on a set of unusual galaxies on Saturday. One of its new images shows a pair of galaxies slowly colliding. The other image shows a spiral galaxy with long, outstretched arms. Most spiral galaxies still have many weapons, but only three of them.

Black and white photos of galaxies from the Hubble Space Telescope

Hubble’s first images show some unusual galaxies after recovering from a month – long stumble.

Science: NASA, ESA, SDSCI, Julianne Tolkien (UW) Image Processing: Alyssa Pagan (SDSCI)

Hubble also observes Jupiter’s north and south lights or tight clusters of auroras and stars. NASA has not yet shared images from those observations.

“I’m glad to have Hubble keeping an eye on the universe again, recreating the kind of images that have conspired and inspired us for decades,” NASA executive Bill Nelson said in a statement. News release. “This is the moment to celebrate the success of a team that is truly dedicated to the mission. Through their efforts, Hubble will pursue his 32nd discovery and we will continue to learn from the laboratory’s transformative vision.”

A mysterious stumbling block that took a month to fix

The Hubble Space Telescope orbits the Earth

Hubble Space Telescope in orbit above Earth.


The world’s most powerful space telescope, the Hubble, was launched into orbit in 1990. It is Photo taken The births and deaths of stars saw new moons orbiting Pluto, and observed two galaxies through our solar system. Its observations allowed astronomers to calculate the age and expansion of the universe and to look at the galaxies that formed after the Big Bang.

But the telescope’s payload system suddenly stopped working on June 13. Built in the 1980s, the computer is like Hubble’s brain – it controls and monitors all the scientific instruments on the spacecraft. Engineers tried to bring it online several times, but failed. Eventually, after more diagnostic tests, they realized that the computer had no problem – causing some other hardware to shut down on the spacecraft.

Nzinga tull sits on the computer in the NASA control room working on the Husing space telescope

Ensinga Dal, Hubble Systems Disorder Response Manager, works in the control room on July 15 at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Green Belt, Maryland.

NASA GSFC / Rebecca Roth

It is not yet clear which hardware is to blame. The telescope’s power control unit (PCU) failed, and engineers suspect that Payload instructed the system to shut down. The PCU may have sent the system incorrect voltage to the system or the failure did not work automatically.

NASA was ready for such problems. Every part of Hubble’s hardware would have been installed before the telescope failed. So the engineers transferred all the faulty parts to that backup hardware. Now the telescope is back in full surveillance mode.

“I feel so excited and relaxed,” Dull said after the hardware switch was done perfectly. “Glad to have good news to share.”

Although NASA has corrected the dilemma, Hubble’s age is a sign that it will begin to interfere with its science. The telescope has not been upgraded since 2009, and some of its hardware is over 30 years old.

“It’s an old machine, it’s kind of to us: Look, I’m a little old here, aren’t I? It’s talking to us,” Surbuchen said Friday. “However, more science is ahead, and we’m excited about it.”