Kepler Spacecraft on Emergency Mode

On Thursday, April 7, mission operations engineers discovered that the Kepler spacecraft was in Emergency Mode (EM). EM is the lowest operational mode and is fuel intensive. Recovering from EM is the team’s priority at this time. One of the disoveries made by the Kepler team is the WTF star.

There are probably millions of exoplanets. If you want to adventure around, you can use stellarium to track them. What is an exoplanet ? An exoplanet or extrasolar planet is a planet that orbits a star other than the Sun. Over 2000 exoplanets have been discovered since 1988 (more specifically, 2107 planets in 1349 planetary systems, including 511 multiple planetary systems, have been confirmed, as of 2 April 2016).

Here is an idea how it looks like from my Stellarium. Do u see that big white patch from my Stellarium? These information which are mapped onto the stellarium is sent by the Kepler space craft.

looking for exoplanets
looking for exoplanets

This is where exactly the Kepler planets are located. To be able to view exoplanets, you will need to activate it on the “Configuration Menu” then scroll to the “exoplanets” section and click on “load by default”. Here is an idea how it looks like when i zoom into it.

Inside the exoplanets
Inside the exoplanets

Here is a useful link to compare from the latest exoplanet discoveries from that of Earth and Jupiter. Nasa uses the kepler space craft which is fitted with a telescope that made those observations and send the information to earth. The spacecraft is nearly 75 million miles from Earth, making the communication slow. Even at the speed of light, it takes 13 minutes for a signal to travel to the spacecraft and back.

Sadly, the latest information about the Kepler spacecraft is that the last regular contact with the spacecraft was on April. 4. We now have to wait for next health status of the kepler space craft.

Nitin J Mutkawoa

Blogger at | Founding member of | An Aficionado Journey in Opensource & Linux – And now It's a NASDAQ touch!

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