By Alex Bellury
Sunday, January 13, 2019
(NEW FRONTIER NEWS) – Russia’s space agency says another attempt at contacting its orbiting radio telescope has failed.
The Spektr-R satellite is still transmitting signals, but they haven’t been able to control the satellite since Friday.
“Today’s program of an effort to try to contact with the spacecraft has ended. Now a meeting of the operational and technical leadership is underway on the outcome,” Roscosmos State Space Corporation’s Director General Alexander Bloshenko said.
The telescope was scheduled to start observing the M106 galaxy located in the Canes Venatici constellation on Monday, which it will do if full restoration of communication occurs.
“Rogozin has demanded focus be made on the preparations for the April launch of the Spektr-RG that is to replace the Spektr-R, which has outlives (sic) its lifespan by 2.5 times. In particular, the corporation’s director general has asked the Russian Academy of Sciences to speed up the analysis of data received from the current orbiter,” Dmitry Rogozin, Roscosmos CEO said.
The satellite was launched in 2011 and has exceeded its initially expected to be transmitting until 2014. The telescope’s active operations lasted 2.5 times longer than expected.
It is used to study radio sources within and outside the galaxy.
Associated Press. (January 2019). Russia says latest attempt to contact orbiting radio telescope failed. CTV News. Canada. https://www.ctvnews.ca/sci-tech/russia-says-latest-attempt-to-contact-orbiting-radio-telescope-failed-1.4251509
Sputnik Staff. (January 2019). Communication Session With Spektr-R Space Telescope Fails – Roscosmos. Sputnik News. Russia. https://sputniknews.com/science/201901131071439415-spektr-telescope-roscosmos/
TASS Staff. (January 2019). Russian space telescope not responding to Earth’s command. TASS. Russia. http://tass.com/science/1039660