After NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope entered “safe” mode about two weeks ago, its operations team has been scrambling to bring a balky gyroscope back online. Now, the space agency says it believes it has fixed the problem.
“The Hubble operations team plans to execute a series of tests to evaluate the performance of the gyro under conditions similar to those encountered during routine science observations, including moving to targets, locking on to a target, and performing precision pointing,” NASA said in a news release. “After these engineering tests have been completed, Hubble is expected to soon return to normal science operations.”
Ground operators put the telescope into a stable configuration earlier this month after one of the three active gyros that help point the telescope failed. According to NASA, the gyro that failed last week had been exhibiting end-of-life behavior for about a year, and its failure was not unexpected.