Astronauts release Hubble telescope back into orbitMay 19th, 2009 - 9:04 pm ICT by IANS
Washington, May 19 (DPA) The US space agency NASA said astronauts Tuesday sent the Hubble Space Telescope back into orbit, where it is to help probe the origins and nature of the universe for at least five more years.
Astronauts spent the past seven days repairing the telescope, completing their tasks Monday on a space walk lasting over seven hours, as a stand-by shuttle stood ready on the launch pad in Florida for a rescue mission.
The US space agency NASA had originally decided against the risky maintenance mission, but US politicians and world astronomers fought successfully to keep alive the instrument that has significantly expanded knowledge of space history.
The crew on the space shuttle Atlantis was set to head back to Earth Friday to land at Kennedy Space Centre in Florida.
Scientists say the repairs and upgrades, which US space agency NASA hopes will extend Hubble’s life span until at least 2014, will continue to provide clues about the origin and nature of the universe.
Since its launch in 1990, Hubble has helped scientists to place the age of the universe at 13.7 billion years, learn that black holes are at the centre of most galaxies, monitor planetary formation and discover that the universe is expanding at an ever-faster pace.
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- Astronauts install device on Hubble to study cosmic origins - May 17, 2009
- Atlantis on last mission to repair Hubble telescope - May 11, 2009
- Astronauts finish Hubble repairs - May 19, 2009
- Minor tile damage to space shuttle Atlantis - May 13, 2009
- Astronauts installing new camera on Hubble - May 15, 2009
- US astronauts conclude spacewalk after battle with tricky bolt - May 18, 2009
- NASA final shuttle launch scheduled for July 8 - May 21, 2011
- NASA unveils first images from revamped Hubble - Sep 10, 2009
- Astronauts install new camera on Hubble - May 15, 2009
- NASA transfers shuttle Discovery to museum - Apr 20, 2012
- Atlantis docks with space station one last time - Jul 10, 2011
- Space shuttle Atlantis lands after Hubble repairs - May 25, 2009
- Revamped Hubble ready to tackle universe's big questions - May 21, 2009
- Canada unveils device for big space telescope - Jul 26, 2012
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