Around the Hubble camera with a space telescope suffers from a malfunction


Around the Hubble camera with a space telescope suffers from a malfunction

The Hubble Space Telescope has been circulating around the Earth since 1990.

Credit: NASA

A hardware problem turned off the main camera on the Hubble Space Telescope, according to a brief statement published today by NASA (January 9th).

The question with wide camera 3 happened on January 8 at 12:23. EST (1723 GMT), according to the statement. NASA did not provide any details of the error itself, as it said that this caused a hardware problem and that the camera was carrying redundant electronics that could be used to restart the instrument.

It is not clear how long it will take to correct the error. It is available when NASA, like other federal government agencies, is partially closed and has been on December 22 since Congress and President Donald Trump have failed to agree on a budget.

Head of the NASA Scientific Mission Directorate, Thomas Zurbuchen, wrote on Twitter about failure, "It's when everyone gets a reminder of two key aspects of space exploration: 1) complex systems like @NASAHubble only work for the dedicated team of amazing experts; 2) all space systems have end-of-life and such issues have it will happen from time to time. "

The telescope is initially costing $ 1.5 billion in 1990 dollars, although this price does not include five missions in space that take place during space voyages. The last of these missions, in 2009, was Wide Field Camera 3. Hubble travels far from the International Space Station, so the telescope has taken care of itself since the end of the Space Shuttle Program in 2011.

Hubble transmits three other active cameras – Advanced Camera for Surveys (ACS), Space Telescope Spectrograph (STIS) and Cosmic Origins Spectrograph (COS) – which continue to collect observations while the Wide Field 3 camera is offline. staff for the Institute of Space Telescope, a contractor operating Hubble.

The camera's malfunction yesterday is not the first challenge that Hubble recently faced. The problem with one of the gyroscopes of the observatory, which allows Hubble to steer in a certain direction, the telescope has fallen behind most of October. However, engineers have again managed to work. The correction enabled Hubble to continue its operation with three gyros, although the telescope can only operate at one, if necessary.

Email Meghan Bartels at [email protected] or follow her @meghanbartels. Follow us @Spacedotcom and Facebook. Original article on


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