The Hubble Space Telescope is expected to return to normal scientific operations soon, after the backup gyroscope was put into service, with engineers able to reduce the unusually high rates to “within an expected range.”
Therefore, Hubble will return to normal operations after additional tests have been performed. The gyroscope measures the speed at which the ship rotates, and then the telescope remains stable, to point in the right direction and block new targets.
A wheel inside the gyro spins at a constant rate of 19,200 revolutions per minute. This wheel is mounted in a sealed cylinder, which is suspended in a thick fluid
The Hubble Space Telescope was put into “safe mode” on Friday, October 5 after one of its three on-board gyroscopes failed. Six new gyroscopes were installed during a Service Mission in 2009 and, while Hubble requires three operations at a time to achieve maximum operational efficiency, it can operate with only one.
The turn that had failed had been exhibiting end-of-life behavior for about a year, NASA revealed, and its failure was not unexpected.
However, the backup gyroscope that scientists had carried out to replace the defective gyroscope was spinning at too high a speed, forcing scientists to come up with a way to fix it, if possible.
Last week a device reboot was performed: “This procedure turned off the turn for a second and then restarted it before the wheel turned in. The intention was to eliminate any failure that might have occurred during the start-up on October 6, after The gyro was inactive for more than seven and a half years, however, the resulting data did not show an improvement in gyro performance, “explained NASA.
Electricity is carried to the motor by thin wires, approximately the size of a human hair, that are immersed in the fluid. Electronics within the gyro detect very small movements
Then, the team performed a series of maneuvers with Hubble in an attempt to eliminate any obstructions or debris that might be causing the problem. This, it seems, has helped to clarify the cause of the problem, with a “significant reduction” in the unusually high turnover rates.
“Hubble then performed additional maneuvers to make sure the gyroscope remained stable within operational limits as the ship moved in. The team saw no problems and continued to observe the gyroscope over the weekend to make sure it remained stable. “, added NASA.
The Hubble backup gyroscope, which had been off for more than 7.5 years, was incorrectly returning extremely high turnover rates, NASA said in a statement. Gyroscopes, of course, are not a standard part, and are an integral part of Hubble’s operations.
The way gyros work is as follows, according to NASA: “A wheel inside the gyroscope rotates at a constant speed of 19,200 revolutions per minute.This wheel is mounted on a sealed cylinder, called a float, which is suspended in a fluid thick.
“The electricity is transported to the motor by thin wires, about the size of a human hair, which are immersed in the fluid, the electronics within the turn detect the very small movements of the wheel axis and communicate this information to the central computer of the wheel. Hubble
“These gyros have two modes: high and low, high mode is a rough mode used to measure large rotation speeds when the spacecraft rotates through the sky from one target to the next, low mode is a mode of precision which is used to measure finer rotations when the spacecraft are fixed on a target and must remain very still. “