Mars Casualty

NASA Administrator Sean O’Keefe announced yesterday that the Hubble Space Telescope will no longer be supported by maintenance missions, starting the end phase of HST. The direct cause is safety concerns over the Shuttle mission planned for 2005, that would have replaced the gyroscopes in Hubble. But because the entire Shuttle program is being retired, this means the end of any maintenance flights for the space telescope.

From what I’ve read, some jobs related to Hubble will be lost almost immediately. And it’s more than just jobs. Somewhere around $200 million in instruments that would have been added to HST in the next Shuttle flight are now wasted.

As far as when Hubble’s life will end, NASA scientists don’t really know. Anytime between tomorrow and 2010, possibly. If a key guidance/tracking instrument fails, that would pretty much be it for Hubble.

January 17, 2004 В· Harry В· Comments Closed
Posted in: Science