October 8, 2018 2:04 pm
Updated: October 10, 2018 9:21 pm

Tech trouble hobbles Hubble Space Telescope

WATCH ABOVE: It has opened up the vast depths of space and taken us billions of years back in time. Now the storied Hubble Space telescope is hobbled by a broken gyroscope. And while engineers on Earth rush to bring it back online, Eric Sorensen looks back at the history of our most celebrated eye in the sky.


The Hubble Space Telescope has been sidelined by a serious pointing problem.

NASA announced Monday that one of Hubble’s gyroscopes failed last Friday. As a result, Hubble is in so-called safe mode with non-essential systems turned off. That means all science observations are on hold.

WATCH BELOW: Here’s what Hubble revealed about the universe over its first 25 years.

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NASA says mission controllers are working to restore the 28-year-old telescope. Gyroscopes are needed to keep Hubble pointed in the right direction during observations. Astronomers use the orbiting observatory to peer deep into the cosmos, revealing faraway solar systems as well as galaxies and black holes.

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Launched in 1990, Hubble has had trouble with its gyroscopes before. Spacewalking shuttle astronauts replaced all six in 2009. The telescope could work with as few as one or two gyroscopes, although that leaves little room for additional breakdowns.

WATCH BELOW: A look back at the day Hubble launched

© 2018 The Canadian Press

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