Universe Today, a space and space technology related site is reporting that the mission to repair the Hubble Telescope is jeopardized by the space debris cloud that resulted from the collision of the Iridium 33 satellite and the Russian Cosmos 2251 satellite.
The Hubble Space Telescope repair mission, STS-125 seemingly gets bad news after more bad news. The mission was already delayed due Hurricane Ike in 2008, and again when a data handling processor on the spacecraft failed. Now, the mission may be too risky for both spacecraft and astronauts following the collision of the Iridium satellite and a defunct Russian communications spacecraft last week. There may be too much debris floating around close to Hubble's orbit, breaching the safety limits NASA has in place. Without a servicing mission by a space shuttle crew, currently targeted for launch in May, the telescope is not expected to last more than another year or two.
So the Hubble Space Telescope may be dead before 2011!
Other debris in that orbit includes pieces of a satellite that China blew up in 2007 as part of a missile test, adding hundreds of pieces of potentially hazardous debris.
A decision about whether to proceed with the Hubble repair mission could be made in the next week or two, Nature reports.
First we had Hurricane Ike and the science data computer issue of September 2008 which delayed repairs.
Art Whipple, the Hubble Manager has stated, after the September 2008 mission delay, "It's unclear how long the telescope will be prevented from transmitting its stunning photos of the cosmos."
Now the satellite debris clouds may prevent a mission altogether?
The conspiracy theorist in me really wants to ask....
What is it that They don't want researchers using the Hubble Telescope to see??
Something that requires over several billion dollars through two separate money injections under the guise of economic stimulus, maybe?
In other news...
Cardinal Giovanni Lajolo, the President of the Pontifical Commission for the Vatican City State, is set to visit the Steward observatory next week.
His Eminence Giovanni Cardinal Lajolo, the President of the Pontifical Commission for the Vatican City State, will visit the offices of the Vatican Observatory Research Group at the University of Arizona's Steward Observatory while in Tucson next month.
As the executive in charge of the day-to-day running of Vatican City, Cardinal Lajolo reports about the Vatican Observatory directly to His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI. Vatican astronomers have announced his visit, which will occur Feb. 26 through Feb. 28.
The Roman Catholic Church under Pope Benedict XVI has also stated on numerous occasions in the last few years that it is ok for catholics to believe in aliens - a subject once shunned by the Vatican and previous Popes.