On Wednesday, although the spacecraft was working properly, its positioning and control system (AACS) readings did not seem to match the spacecraft’s movements and orientation, indicating that the instrument was confused in space.
AACS is essential for Voyager 1 to send NASA information about its interstellar environment, which is why the spacecraft’s antenna is pointing directly at our planet, Business Insider reports.
Susan Dodd, project manager at NASA’s Voyager 1 and Voyager 2 jet engine lab, said the problem appears to be very common at this stage of the mission.
“Both spacecraft are about 45 years old, which is much higher than the mission’s initial expectations,” she said.
According to NASA, the dual Voyager 1 behaves normally.
Launched in 1977 to explore the outer planets of our solar system, Voyager 1 lasts longer than expected and sends information about its orbits to Earth. This innovative device left our solar system in 2012. Entered the interstellar space.
It is currently worth $ 14.5 billion. It is the farthest man-made object in space, miles from Earth. Light travels to the current Voyager 1 interstellar space for 20 hours and 33 minutes, so the two-way message between the space agency and Voyager takes two days.
What NASA can tell engineers is that Voyager 1 sends randomly generated data to AACS, which “does not reflect what actually happens on the spacecraft.”
But even if the system data shows something else, the spacecraft’s antenna seems to be properly tuned – it receives and executes NASA commands and sends the data back to Earth.
“Until we understand the nature of the problem, the team can not predict how much of this will affect the spacecraft’s ability to collect and transmit scientific information,” NASA said.
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