NASA's Voyager 1 spacecraft resumes sending engineering updates to Earth-Xinhua

NASA's Voyager 1 spacecraft resumes sending engineering updates to Earth

Source: Xinhua| 2024-04-23 02:55:45|Editor:

LOS ANGELES, April 22 (Xinhua) -- For the first time since November, NASA's Voyager 1 spacecraft is returning usable data about the health and status of its onboard engineering systems, NASA said on Monday.

The probe and its twin, Voyager 2, are the only spacecraft to ever fly in interstellar space.

The next step is to enable the spacecraft to begin returning science data again, according to NASA.

Voyager 1 stopped sending readable science and engineering data back to Earth on Nov. 14 last year, even though mission controllers could tell the spacecraft was still receiving their commands and otherwise operating normally.

In March, the Voyager engineering team at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Southern California confirmed that the issue was tied to one of the spacecraft's three onboard computers, which is responsible for packaging the science and engineering data before it is sent to Earth.

Launched over 46 years ago, the twin Voyager spacecraft are the longest-running and most distant spacecraft in history. Before the start of their interstellar exploration, both probes flew by Saturn and Jupiter, and Voyager 2 flew by Uranus and Neptune.