NASA Restores voyager 1 to working order

June 22 2024
Author: Kingston Ho
Edited by Kevin Guo

Voyager 1, the farthest man-made object in space, has resumed gathering information about interstellar space after a computer issue threatened the spacecraft's operations. Since the issue surfaced in November, engineers have been frantically diagnosing and resolving the problem. This process was complicated by the nearly two-day input delay with the probe, as it is more than 15 billion miles from Earth.

The Voyager Mission History

Voyager 1 and its twin, Voyager 2, were launched in 1977 on a mission to explore the outer planets in our galaxy. NASA took advantage of a rare planetary alignment, enabling the probes to visit Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune by using the gravity of each planet to propel them to the next. This maneuver not only accelerates the probe but also reduces the amount of rocket fuel the Voyager needs to use. After completing its planetary mission, Voyager 1 continued its journey toward the edge of the solar system, capturing the iconic "pale blue dot" photo of Earth in 1990.

Both spacecraft have since been collecting valuable data on the heliosphere, the region of space influenced by the sun. Without the heliosphere, planets would be blasted by interstellar radiation. Each spacecraft is also equipped with a golden phonograph record containing sounds and images representing humanity and life on Earth, intended to be discovered by another civilization someday.

Recent Developments and Future Prospects

In April, NASA reported a significant breakthrough when Voyager 1 sent back data about its engineering systems and health. This was followed by news last month that two of Voyager 1's science instruments had been restored to functionality, allowing the probe to continue sending back science data. On Thursday, NASA announced that all remaining instruments had been brought back online, fully restoring Voyager 1 to normal operations.

Work Cited

Mayorquín, Orlando. “Voyager 1, after Major Malfunction, Is Back from the Brink, NASA Says.” The New York Times, The New York Times, 15 June 2024,

“Let Gravity Assist You...” ESA, ESA, 21 June 2013,

Jones, Hilary. “Cosmos Magazine.” Space Probes Reveal Solar System’s Bullet Shape | COSMOS Magazine, 11 May 2007,