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Hubble returned after repairs

Hubble returned after repairs

The famous Hubble Space Telescope is back. Due to technical difficulties, the old instrument was unable to do scientific work for some time, but NASA engineers have now found a solution.

Hubble

One less gyroscope

The main problem was defects in one of the gyroscopes responsible for the correct alignment of the telescope. So the engineering team had to implement workarounds to keep Hubble properly aligned when there are fewer gyroscopes available. This appears to have been quite successful.

Last Friday, Hubble was able to resume scientific operations. NASA has now published the first image taken by the telescope after the restart. The image shows NGC 1546, a nearby galaxy in the Dorado constellation.
The first Hubble image after the renovationThe first image of Hubble after the technology upgrade

The image of the galaxy provides a good look at the dust trails slightly above and backlit next to the galaxy's core. This dust absorbs light from the core, causing it to redden and making the dust appear rusty brown. The core itself glows brightly with a yellowish light, indicating the presence of a larger number of stars. Bright blue regions of active star formation shine through the dust. Several background galaxies are also visible, including a peripheral spiral galaxy to the left of NGC 1546.

Hubble is expected to offer a lot

“Hubble's new image of a stunning galaxy demonstrates the complete success of the telescope's new, more stable pointing mode,” said Jennifer Weissman, senior Hubble project scientist at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center. “We are now ready for many years of discoveries to come, observing everything from our solar system to exoplanets to distant galaxies. Hubble plays an important role in NASA's astronomical toolkit.”

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Hubble was launched in 1990. After initial problems that required repairs in space, it has now been providing critical data for decades of research. The image now published is part of a joint project with the James Webb Space Telescope, which is now in use. The two instruments complement each other well, as Hubble operates primarily in visible light, while Webb is designed for infrared imaging.

summary

  • The Hubble Space Telescope is operational again after technical difficulties
  • Defective gyroscopes led to problems with telescope alignment
  • Engineers have found solutions to align Hubble correctly despite having fewer gyroscopes
  • Hubble resumed scientific operations on Friday
  • The first image after the restart shows the galaxy NGC 1546 in the Dorado constellation
  • The image shows traces of dust that absorbs light from the nucleus and turns it red
  • The Hubble and James Webb Space Telescopes complement each other in their function

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