Zombie Satellite Now Under Control

Artist concept of the Galaxy 15 satellite in orbit. Credit: Orbital Sciences.

A geostationary satellite that become a “zombie” earlier this year and stopped communicating with ground controllers has now finally been reset and is under control. The Galaxy 15 communications satellite had its “brains fried” by a solar flare and went rogue in early May. Although it was still functional, its navigation and communications systems would not accept commands, and the satellite drifted out of its orbit. On December 23, 2010, engineers at the company Intelsat were finally able to command the unit to reset after a battery drained. Shortly thereafter Galaxy 15 began accepting commands, and then was put into safe mode. “We are pleased to report it no longer poses any threat of satellite interference to either neighboring satellites or customer services,” IntelSat said on their website. (…) Read the rest of Zombie Satellite Now Under Control (189 words)

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