Technology

NASA and SpaceX want to extend the life of the Hubble telescope by pushing it into a higher and more stable orbit

The Hubble Space Telescope has been wandering in space for more than three decades on 24 April 1990. Though his end is drawing near, NASA intends to postpone it And yesterday signed an unfunded space law agreement with SpaceX.

With this contract, they intend to study the feasibility of “advancing the agency’s Hubble Space Telescope with the Dragon spacecraft into a higher orbit at no cost to the government”. Through this program, His idea is to reactivate James Webb’s predecessor. and “understand the business possibilities” that private companies can offer NASA.



SpaceX, in conjunction with the Polaris program, proposed the study to learn about the technical challenges associated with service missions with Hubble. According to the space agency, Any company can send its proposal to use its space technology for research purposes, and thus the deal is not exclusive to SpaceX.

SpaceX's Dragon spacecraft will be the one that will be used to take Hubble to a higher orbit.
SpaceX’s Dragon spacecraft will be the one that will be used to take Hubble to a higher orbit.
NASA

Using Hubble to Study

Engineers at Elon Musk’s aerospace company and the Polaris program estimate the probe will last six months. During this time they will collect technical data from the telescope and Dragon spacecraft. As a result, teams will be able to determine whether it is possible to “reconnect, dock and move the telescope”. safely in a more stable orbit.


Effects of DART on asteroid captured with telescope.

Hubble is currently about 335 miles (539 km) from Earth And moving it to a higher orbit can increase its life expectancy. Thomas Zurbeken, associate administrator for the Science Mission Directorate at NASA’s Washington Headquarters, says the project is “an example of innovative approaches NASA is exploring through public-private partnerships.”

Through this agreement, Jessica Jensen, Vice President of Operations and Customer Integration at SpaceX, believes it will help them “expand space capabilities” and help them achieve their goals of becoming the world’s largest cosmopolitan. “A multiplanetary civilization that travels in space”.

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