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National Aeronautics and Space Administration

Goddard Space Flight Center

Astrophysics Science Division | Sciences and Exploration

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About ten years ago, 370 miles above the Earth �


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Selected by the sciLINKS program, a service of National Science Teachers Association. Copyright 2001.


hubble space telescopeNASA, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, sent a brave seven-member crew about 370 miles (595.33 Kilometers) above Earth to tune-up the Hubble Space Telescope. The astronauts replaced equipment to keep Hubble healthy through the rest of its 20-year mission.
hubble space telescopeA faster main computer and six new gyroscopes are some of the things that will now make Hubble stronger and better. The gyros help Hubble point at stars and other heavenly objects. To do its scientific work, the telescope needs three of its six gyros working at any time. Broken wires inside four had left Hubble with only two usable gyros and no back-ups. Because Hubble could not easily turn around to point at what it wants to see, it was placed in safe hold in November 13, 1999 until the gyros were replaced on December 22, 1999.
hubble space telescopeThe improved Hubble Space Telescope will continue to explore the mysteries of the Universe as it searches for black holes, nebulae, galaxies, stars and planets around other suns!
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Content Last Updated: 12/27/99