An Evaluation of the Hubble Space Telescope Thermal Design in Preparation for the Final Servicing Mission
Having been in operation for over 15 years, the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) had experienced significant changes in both hardware upgrades and operational modes. The changes were necessary to improve performance of some equipment and to replace failed electronics in others. Hardware replacements were done in several servicing missions. To accommodate the change in physical condition of HST, alterations in the way the telescope is operated were also required. The final opportunity to make any hardware changes on HST is during Servicing Mission 4 (SM-4) which is currently scheduled for December of 2007. It is important to make the most appropriate changes in order to ensure that HST will be in good operating condition until its planned termination. In order to provide manifest input to the HST project for the final servicing mission, the HST thermal team must conduct careful evaluation of every single piece of hardware on HST.