NASA Space Telescope Is Back Online After Gyroscope Glitch

On October 10, the telescope changed its direction for optimal solar panel charging, also it exchanges its critical hardware to backup units and this entire layout happens automatically.

The gyroscope was changed into balky gyroscopes by the Chandra team; they are expecting that the telescope will work again when it will complete the reconfiguration. The officials of the team noticed and confirmed that the scientific instruments are all safe as well as the systems performed as they were expected.

Chandra was launched by NASA on July 23, 1999. It is one of the great observatories and works along with the Hubble Space Telescope, Spitzer Space Telescope and Compton Gamma Ray Observatory. When the telescope was not working its operations the Hubble team was investigating possible solutions for correcting the problems but considering operating the telescope with just a single active gyro.

Chandra X-ray Observatory in Earth orbit
Image Credit: NASA

Chandra is careful to X-ray sources and this is 100 times unclear by the set of high technology mirrors, then the previous instruments of its kind that they made. Chandra X-ray Observatory has been floating through the space for about 20 years with no end in accurate and deep understanding of the initial five year mission.

Officials of NASA reports that the facility that Chandra’s gyroscopes provides through a glitch.

The computer calculated an incorrect value for the momentum of the spacecraft that leads to safe mode activated because of just a three second period of bad data. The team of Chandra X-ray Observatory has decided to switch the gyroscopes and then to place that gyroscopes to that which experienced the glitch in reverse. The officials also added in an update that by the end of the week some of the operations related to science will be executed by Chandra as they will return it to those operations.

Artist’s concept of Chandra X-ray Observatory
Artist’s concept of Chandra X-ray Observatory (via NASA/CXC/SAO)

Moreover, the staff at NASA ‘s Goddard Space Flight Center and the Institute of Space Telescope of Science has also looked and helped in analyzing the issue and to correct it as well. When this was in process NASA suspended activity and it forms an Anomaly Review Board to investigate the issue and to make a recovery plan for it. As they were already assuming that the team they have made will rescue the malfunctioning gyroscope so that Hubble will then resume its operations in the three gyro configuration standard. They have also think of a backup plan that if the team will not be successful then the spacecraft will simply move on, because for the running of the reduced gyro mode it uses only in spinning wheel and that will surely mean that there will be less sky coverage at a time. Despite of all these things NASA knows really well that the impact of it will be relatively limited on the overall science of machine.

It is not the black despondency for NASA‘s collection. In the starting months of this year many researchers have used Chandra’s high angular resolution mirrors for the purpose of capturing the portrait of stars family.


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