Spitzer Space Telescope
By Jonathan Fields and Haylee DS
(3.6 µm, 4.5 µm, 5.8 µm and 8 µm).
The Telescope and Its History
The telescope contains the instruments, including the many infrared cameras on board and the cryogrenic chamber which contains liquid helium. The telescope must remain at temperatures averaging around 5.5 K (-459 degrees Fahrenheit) in order for many of the cameras and instruments to capture the slight variances in infrared.
The spacecraft portion contains the equipment used to collect the data from the telescope's cameras, to communicate with various stations around Earth, and regulate the temperature inside both the telescope as well as inside the spacecraft, which must remain at near room temperature in order for the instruments to remain functioning.
The telescope was launched in 2003, and ran out of coolant in 2009. The two shortest avelength modules of the IRAC camera are still operable, so the Spitzer is still collecting a and is somewhat functional.
Discovered a young star with a "hula hoop." It blinks once every 93 days.
Observed the gas emissions from the comet ISON.
[10 days ago] Discovered what was thought to be a lone asteroid meandering through space is actually a comet with direction.
The Spitzer is in space, thus it is the best site for an 'observatory.'
Current Research and Improvements
It is still orbiting the sun and sending informatino back, so no improvements have been made lately. It is constantly collecting data to send back for research.
Data Collection and Use
The Spitzer has infared cameras to take pictures and the spacecraft sends the data back to Earth for scientists.