Dark matter detection satellite functioning normally: experts

Updated 2018-02-01 13:46:00 Xinhua

Illustration of the Wukong space telescope.

China's dark matter detection satellite, "Wukong," the Chinese name for Monkey King, is operating normally, a month after a computer malfunction in late 2017, experts said.

Wukong, also known as the Dark Matter Particle Explorer (DAMPE), was launched in December 2015. It is helping scientists lift the "cloak of invisibility" from dark matter.

On the night of Dec. 29, the DAMPE team discovered abnormalities with the satellite's high-voltage power supply, which caused data transmission to fall to low levels.

"It was highly possible that a computer reset itself due to the impact of high-energy particles," said scientist Chang Jin. "Urgent repairs were required."

After a series of order and parameter retransmissions, the satellite resumed normal function on the afternoon of the second day.

A month after the repair, Wukong has been sending back data normally, and no equipment on the satellite was damaged, according to the DAMPE team.

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