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Hubble Space Telescope to be Fixed by NASA

At this time, the famed Hubble Space Telescope is still inoperable. All science instruments, as well as the spacecraft itself, are in excellent operating order, according to NASA. The issue is that the computer in charge of the spacecraft’s operations, built in the 1980s, has experienced a significant glitch that has kept it from departing safe mode. NASA said that it had conducted another series of tests on June 23 and 24 to pinpoint the problem with the payload computer.

Hubble’s payload computer has been down since June 13, and the spacecraft has had to stop collecting science data because of it. Onboard the spacecraft, there are two payload computers, one of which serves as a backup. Both are on the Science Instrument as well as the Command and Data Handling unit. The testing, according to NASA, involved turning on the backup computer for the first time since the Hubble has been in space on June 23 and 24.

Unfortunately for NASA, engineers employed various hardware pieces from both the primary and backup payload computers during testing, and they all had the same issue. Any instruction that instructs Hubble Space Telescope to write to or read from memory is unsuccessful. According to NASA, it’s doubtful that all of the payload computer’s separate components are malfunctioning. The crew is currently looking into other hardware as a possible source of the problems.

Another module on the Science Instrument and Command and Data Handling unit that engineers are looking into are the Command Unit/Science Data Formatter. The NASA team is also looking at the power regulator to check if the voltage delivered to the device is out of specification. The researchers believe that if the voltage were too high, the problems they’re seeing would occur.

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