Briefly describe at least three of the setbacks and recoveries in the history of this telescope.

This year was the 25th anniversary of the launch of the Hubble Space Telescope in 1990. Hubble
has been one of the most scientifically productive machines ever built, enabling observations of
the universe that have changed our picture of it and that very often could not have been
duplicated from the ground. Unlike most satellites, Hubble was launched into an orbit that has
allowed it to be serviced by astronauts, which has enabled it to be repaired and to benefit from
the advance of technology over its lifetime.
You will read the article: “25 Years Later, Hubble Sees Beyond Troubled Start” by Dennis
Overbye of the New York Times. Imagine that you must explain to someone who has not taken an
astronomy class in college what Hubble is, how it made it to 25 years, and why it is important.
Your job is to relate the history of Hubble in a compelling and scientifically accurate way
(you dont want to put your friend to sleep, nor misinform her). You can focus on whatever
aspects of the story interest you, but in your monologue you must explicitly address these key
• Briefly describe at least three of the setbacks and recoveries in the history of this
• Follow one of the many links in the story to get a detailed look at one event in Hubbles
history. Tell that story in a compelling and detailed way (~1 paragraph or more).
• Look at one of the galleries linked below. Pick a favorite image and explain it using facts
that you have learned in this course. Be sure to cite references as needed.
• A basic understanding of the size of numbers is an important part of this course. Though
Hubble was built over more than 10 years, compare the cost of Hubble to the size of the
US Federal budget in 1990. Be sure to cite references.
Your essay should be approximately 4 paragraphs in length. Though that is not a strict upper
limit, you should try to communicate the required information within this limited space.
You will be graded according to the attached rubric, which emphasizes accuracy, clarity, and
quality of writing.

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