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Commandeered spacecraft may be out of gas


Commandeered spacecraft may be out of gas

An attempt to move a disused NASA spacecraft to an orbit closer to Earth appears to have run out of gas, The New York Times reports. In May, a group of space buffs succeeded in communicating with the International Sun-Earth Explorer-3 (ISEE-3), which was launched in 1978 to study space weather. Last week, the group was able to fire thrusters to increase the spin rate of the spacecraft. But attempts to fire its main thrusters for an orbital maneuver have failed—an indication that fuel tanks are empty. Leaders of the ISEE-3 Reboot Project say that they will continue to try and use the probe’s scientific instruments in its current orbit.

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