Deep space probes

A new proposal suggests that New Horizons could be repurposed to become a novel space telescope after this encounter. That is because it is set to find tens of thousands of candidate planets—many of which will require time-consuming independent confirmation using other telescopes. Beyond boosting exoplanet research, New Horizons could also use its ultraviolet and infrared sensors to study the early universe.

Deep space probes

However, it was later restored to action and performed excellently. Early in the mission, material ejected during launch vehicle separation caused the closely spaced ion extraction grids to short-circuit.

Newer Horizons: Scientists Pitch Pluto Probe as a Unique Deep-Space Telescope - Scientific American

The contamination was eventually cleared, as the material was eroded by electrical arcing, sublimed by outgassing, or simply allowed to drift out. This was achieved by repeatedly restarting the engine in an engine repair mode, arcing across trapped material.

The PEPE detectors had a secondary function to monitor such effects from the engine. No interference Deep space probes found. Another failure was the loss of the star tracker. The star tracker determines spacecraft orientation by comparing the star field to its internal charts.

Although MICAS is more sensitive, its field-of-view is an order of magnitude smaller, creating a greater information processing burden. Ironically, the star tracker was an off-the-shelf component, expected to be highly reliable.

The Autonav system required occasional manual corrections. Most problems were in identifying objects that were too dim, or were difficult to identify because of brighter objects causing diffraction spikes and reflections in the camera, causing Autonav to misidentify targets.

The Remote Agent system was presented with three simulated failures on the spacecraft and correctly handled each event.


Overall this constituted a successful demonstration of fully autonomous planning, diagnosis, and recovery. The MICAS instrument was a design success, but the ultraviolet channel failed due to an electrical fault. This caused continual interruptions in its scientific use during the remaining mission, including the Comet Borrelly encounter.

This, plus Braille's lower albedomeant that the asteroid was not bright enough for the Autonav to focus the camera in the right direction, and the picture shoot was delayed by almost an hour. However, the flyby of Comet Borrelly was a great success and returned extremely detailed images of the comet's surface.

Such images were of higher resolution than the only previous pictures, of Halley's Comet taken by the Giotto spacecraft.

Reality Check

The PEPE instrument reported that the comet's fields were offset from the nucleus. This is believed to be due to emission of jets, which were not distributed evenly across the comet's surface. Despite having no debris shields, the spacecraft survived the comet passage intact. Once again, the sparse comet jets did not appear to point towards the spacecraft.

Deep Space 1 then entered its second extended mission phase, focused on retesting the spacecraft's hardware technologies. The focus of this mission phase was on the ion engine systems.

The spacecraft eventually ran out of hydrazine fuel for its attitude control thrusters. The highly efficient ion thruster had a sufficient amount of propellant left to perform attitude control in addition to main propulsion, thus allowing the mission to continue. Although this was a very distant flyby, the instrument did succeed in taking multiple infrared spectra of the planet.

DS1's ion engines were shut down on 18 December at approximately On-board communications were commanded to remain active in case the craft is needed in the future.

However, attempts to resume contact in March were unsuccessful.Deep-Space Probes Second Edition draws on the latest research to explain why we should explore beyond the edge of the Solar System and how we can build highly sophisticated robot spacecraft to make the journey.

Many technical problems remain to be solved, among them propulsion systems to permit far higher velocities, and .

The Deep Space Network is one of the facilities at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, where many of the agency's space missions are designed, built and operated. A space probe is an unmanned spacecraft that is used to make observations and send information back to Earth regarding these observed objects.

While many satellites are also space probes, these pages are dedicated to the deep space probes, those which have escaped Earth's gravity. A NASA probe orbiting Mars has captured new photos of two dead spacecraft frozen in place at their Red Planet graves.

The photos were taken by NASA's powerful Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO.

Deep space probes

22 rows · This is a list of space probes that have left Earth orbit (or were launched with that intention . Jul 21,  · Humanity has been a spacefaring species for barely sixty years now. In that brief time, we’ve fairly mastered the business of putting objects into orbit around the Earth, and done so with such.

NASA - Missions - Deep Space