• August 1, 2021

Exclusive: NASA Struggles to Fix Failure of Hubble Space Telescope’s 1980s Computer

 Exclusive: NASA Struggles to Fix Failure of Hubble Space Telescope’s 1980s Computer


The Hubble Space Telescope was launched into low-earth orbit in 1990 with an even older computer. Over the next 13 years it received upgrades and repairs from astronauts on five different visits from America’s Space Shuttle.

But now in 2021, “NASA continues to work on resolving an issue with the payload computer on the Hubble Space Telescope,” reports SciTechDaily — though “The telescope itself and science instruments remain in good health.”

The operations team will be running tests and collecting more information on the system to further isolate the problem. The science instruments will remain in a safe mode state until the issue is resolved…

The computer halted on Sunday, June 13. An attempt to restart the computer failed on Monday, June 14. Initial indications pointed to a degrading computer memory module as the source of the computer halt. When the operations team attempted to switch to a back-up memory module, however, the command to initiate the backup module failed to complete. Another attempt was conducted on both modules Thursday evening to obtain more diagnostic information while again trying to bring those memory modules online. However, those attempts were not successful.



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