NASA says Voyager 1 is fully back online months after it stopped making sense

A render of Voyager 1 in space.
Image: NASA

Voyager 1, the farthest human-made craft from the Earth, is finally sending back data from all four of its scientific instruments, NASA said this week. That means the agency is once more receiving its readings on plasma waves, magnetic fields, and space-bound particles.

Voyager 1 stopped sending back good data in November, and fixing it was fraught as engineers had to wait 45 hours to hear anything back. In April, the agency got it to start sending back health and status information, then science data from two of its instruments in May.

Now, NASA says Voyager 1, which is over 15 billion miles from Earth, is “conducting normal science operations” and the agency just needs to resync its timekeeping software and do some maintenance on a sparingly-used digital tape recorder.

That’s not bad for a probe that has continued to work for the better part of 47 years. Voyager 1 was originally launched in 1977 on a five-year fly-by mission to study Jupiter and Saturn. And despite occasional issues with it and Voyager 2, NASA keeps figuring out ways to squeeze more life out of the probes, like tapping into reserve power or firing up thrusters that hadn’t been used in nearly three decades.

A 1970s disco-style poster showing one of the Voyager spacecraft.
Image: NASA
One of several Voyager posters from NASA’s website.

Now seems like a great time to either remind you of or point you to the sick Voyager posters, like the one above, that NASA has published on its site.

Source: The Verge NASA says Voyager 1 is fully back online months after it stopped making sense