View Full Version : The Spitzer Space Telescope Speaks Its Mind

2009-May-04, 10:00 PM
The Spitzer Space Telescope is close to running out of coolant. Around May 12, the telescope will use up the last drop of the coolant that chills the instruments to just a few degrees above absolute zero. Everyone knew this was coming, but still it is sobering news. However, even though the coolant [...]

More... (http://www.universetoday.com/2009/05/04/the-spitzer-space-telescope-speaks-its-mind/)

Nick Theodorakis
2009-May-04, 10:31 PM
Better get those studio lights off him, then.


2009-May-05, 03:46 AM
and a new set of specks too.

Larry Jacks
2009-Sep-29, 07:56 PM
From Aviation Week & Space Technology: Spitzer Telescope Warms To New Tasks (http://www.aviationweek.com/aw/generic/story.jsp?id=news/Spitzer092809.xml&headline=Spitzer%20Telescope%20Warms%20To%20New%20 Tasks&channel=space)

The telescope finally ran out of coolant on May 15, 2009, preventing the use of the telescope's longer wavelength multiband imaging photometer and its infrared spectrograph. Rather than end operations, scientists subsequently devised a new "warm" mission that enables observations to continue using two shortest-wavelength detectors in Spitzer's infrared array camera. Recalibration work has been under way for about three months, and although some science has been possible, the calibration work is expected to result in relatively improved capability.

"Following this it should be good to go until 2013," says Michael Werner, NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory astronomy and physics directorate chief scientist. Spitzer is the final element in NASA's Great Observatories program, which includes both the Hubble and Chandra space telescopes. During its service life to date the telescope has made several key discoveries, including the 2005 detection of the first light from an exoplanet, a planetary body orbiting another star.