Hubble Space Telescope Technology Fact


“Several spacecraft support systems are required to keep the Hubble functioning smoothly in space. These systems are located around the body of the spacecraft and encompassed by the outer hull. Solar Arrays(2). 25 ft (7 meter) panels that convert 5680 watts of electricity in order to power the telescope. Communications Antennae (2). Transmit Hubble’s information to communication satellites called the Tracking & Data Relay Satellite (TDRS) System for relay to White Sands, the Space Telescope Operations Control Center (STOCC) in Greenbelt, Maryland, and the Space Telescope Science Institute (STSci) in Baltimore, Maryland. Computer Support System Modules. Contains devices and systems needed to operate the Hubble Telescope. Serves as the master control system for communications, navigation, power management, etc. Electronic Boxes. Houses much of the electronics including computer equipment and rechargeable batteries. Aperture Door. Protects Hubble’s optics in the same way the camera lens cap shields the lens. It closes during service missions and in response to certain kinds of  “safe mode.” Light Shield. Light passes through this before entering the optics system. It blocks unwanted external light from entering the Hubble. Pointing Control System. This system aligns the spacecraft to point and remain locked on any target.


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