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Hubble's Problems Fixed

By Keith Cowing
July 16, 2021
Filed under
Hubble's Problems Fixed

NASA Hubble Update: July 16, 2021 – NASA Successfully Switches to Backup Hardware on Hubble Space Telescope
“NASA has successfully switched to backup hardware on the Hubble Space Telescope, including powering on the backup payload computer, on July 15. The switch was performed to compensate for a problem with the original payload computer that occurred on June 13 when the computer halted, suspending science data collection.”

NASA Hubble Status: July 14, 2021 – ?NASA Identifies Possible Cause of Hubble Computer Problem
“NASA has identified the possible cause of the payload computer problem that suspended Hubble Space Telescope science operations on June 13. The telescope itself and science instruments remain healthy and in a safe configuration.”
Hubble Update: July 08, 2021 – Successful Completion of Multi-Day Test
“NASA successfully completed a test of procedures that would be used to switch to backup hardware on Hubble in response to the payload computer problem. This switch could occur next week after further preparations and reviews.”
Operations Underway to Restore Payload Computer on NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope
“Over the next week or so, the team will review and update all of the operations procedures, commands and other related items necessary to perform the switch to backup hardware. They will then test their execution against a high-fidelity simulator. The team performed a similar switch in 2008, which allowed Hubble to continue normal science operations after a CU/SDF module failed. A servicing mission in 2009 then replaced the entire SI C&DH unit, including the faulty CU/SDF module, with the SI C&DH unit currently in use.”
NASA Completes Additional Tests to Diagnose Computer Problem on Hubble Space Telescope
“NASA is continuing to diagnose a problem with the payload computer on the Hubble Space Telescope after completing another set of tests on June 23 and 24. The payload computer halted on June 13 and the spacecraft stopped collecting science data. The telescope itself and its science instruments remain in good health and are currently in a safe configuration.”
Operations Underway to Restore Payload Computer on NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope 22 June 2021
“NASA continues to work to resolve a problem with the Hubble Space Telescope payload computer that halted on June 13. After performing tests on several of the computer’s memory modules, the results indicate that a different piece of computer hardware may have caused the problem, with the memory errors being only a symptom. The operations team is investigating whether the Standard Interface (STINT) hardware, which bridges communications between the computer’s Central Processing Module (CPM) and other components, or the CPM itself is responsible for the issue. The team is currently designing tests that will be run in the next few days to attempt to further isolate the problem and identify a potential solution.”
Operations Continue to Restore Payload Computer on NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope
“NASA continues to work on resolving an issue with the payload computer on the Hubble Space Telescope. The operations team will be running tests and collecting more information on the system to further isolate the problem. The science instruments will remain in a safe mode state until the issue is resolved. The telescope itself and science instruments remain in good health. The computer halted on Sunday, June 13. An attempt to restart the computer failed on Monday, June 14. Initial indications pointed to a degrading computer memory module as the source of the computer halt. When the operations team attempted to switch to a back-up memory module, however, the command to initiate the backup module failed to complete. Another attempt was conducted on both modules Thursday evening to obtain more diagnostic information while again trying to bring those memory modules online. However, those attempts were not successful.”

NASA Watch founder, Explorers Club Fellow, ex-NASA, Away Teams, Journalist, Space & Astrobiology, Lapsed climber.