Spitzer Bows Out After 16 Years

NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope has reached the end of it's mission as part of the Four Great Observatories observing the universe around us.

NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope has reached the end of it’s mission as part of the Four Great Observatories observing the universe around us.

Launched in 2003, Spitzer teamed up with the Hubble Space Telescope, the Chandra X-Ray and Compton Gamma Ray Observatories to provide a broader picture of the cosmos than any previous mission.

Spitzer has taught us about entirely new aspects of the cosmos and taken us many steps further in understanding how the universe works, addressing questions about our origins, and whether or not are we alone.

Thomas Zurbuchen, associate administrator of NASA’s Science Mission Directorate in Washington said.

Spitzer studied comets and asteroids in our solar system, as well as discovering a previously unidentified ring around Saturday. It studied star and planet formations, the evolution of galaxies and the composition of interstellar dust. It wasn’t the first infrared telescope out there, but it was the most sensitive and it now enters a period known as safe mode.

Brad and Matt will discuss this remarkable mission in more detail in next week’s Talkin’ Science, but you can catch this week’s right now – including details of a vampire star system!

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