NASA Touches 2Probe since March- NASA has just made contact with Voyager 2 for the first time since march. Cuddles to a key technology upgrade. The agency has revealed that it sent commands to the probe on October 29th using the latest upgraded Deep Space Station 43 dish in Canberra, Australia.
The instructions were part of a test for new hardware, including radio transmitter that hadin’t been reuse or replace for over 47 years -before Voyager 2 even launched.
The mission team received status updates and scientific data from Voyager in the intervening months, but couldn’t reach out.
DSS43 is a part of a huge Deep Space Network that ensures all space craft beyond the moon can get in touch as long as there’s a line of sight to earth. This dish is the only one that can relate with Voyager 2, however.
The craft is a huge distance away. (11.6 billion miles) that northern hemisphere antennas can’t get in touch, DSS43 is the only southern hemisphere dish stronger enough to send commands
The crucial update will be for more than just Voyager2 when the dish officially steps back online in February 2021. NASA expect it consistencies rover to land on Mars on February 18th, and DSS43 could play a key role in that mission.
It may be also vital for upcoming moon missions and eventually, crewed trips to mars. What money NASA invest now could easily pay dividends for decades of future space inspection.