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posted by martyb on Sunday July 08 2018, @07:29PM   Printer-friendly
from the patience-comes-to-those-who-wait dept.

NASA's Kepler Spacecraft Pauses Science Observations to Download Science Data

Earlier this week, NASA's Kepler team received an indication that the spacecraft fuel tank is running very low. NASA has placed the spacecraft in a hibernation-like state in preparation to download the science data collected in its latest observation campaign. Once the data has been downloaded, the expectation is to start observations for the next campaign with any remaining fuel.

[...] To bring the data home, the spacecraft must point its large antenna back to Earth and transmit the data during its allotted Deep Space Network time, which is scheduled in early August. Until then, the spacecraft will remain stable and parked in a no-fuel-use safe mode. On August 2, the team will command the spacecraft to awaken from its no-fuel-use state and maneuver the spacecraft to the correct orientation and downlink the data. If the maneuver and download are successful, the team will begin its 19th observation campaign on August 6 with the remaining fuel.

Also at The Verge and Engadget.

Related: Google Researchers Discover an 8th Planet in the Kepler-90 System
Citizen Scientists Credited for Discovery of Multi-Planet System
Kepler's K2 Mission Going Strong With Another 95 New Exoplanets Confirmed
NASA's TESS Mission Set to Launch on Wednesday, April 18

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  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday July 09 2018, @08:08PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday July 09 2018, @08:08PM (#704704)

    Which was sad on the one hand, as we can't have an EM drive, but on the other, it also meant that the EM drive didn't require us to re-write physics again.