For weeks, NASA scientists worked on possible solutions for the Hubble Space Telescope and it is returning to operation more than a month after its original payload computer shut down. The repair was possible after NASA found the real cause of the computer glitch and used backup hardware to solve the targeted problem affecting the CPU unit of the Hubble’s system, the power control unit which sends electricity to all the hardware. “We even had people come out of retirement who were experts in these areas on Hubble to help us,” James Jeletic, Hubble’s deputy project manager, told media. The process of bringing the system back online is slow but the agency has started to bring science instruments out of “safe mode.” The Hubble team also thinks there’s a chance the power unit might simply fix itself over time.
Hubble will resume science work this week. “The first observations will hopefully be done over the weekend,” the Agency communicated. Hubble was originally scheduled for only 15 years of service. Its main onboard computer is an Intel 486 computer whose 25 megahertz speed was the best available (and rated for space travel) when astronauts upgraded the system around the turn of the century. „It’s very, very primitive by today’s standard of what you wear on your wrist, but it’s more than enough for what we need to do,” Jeletic said. “Hubble is back!”