Artistic vision of a spacecraft New Horizons by NASA flying past a Kuiper Belt object 2104 MU69
The spacecraft New Horizons switched to vigor and is preparing for a distant planetary span in 2019. This is a Kuiper belt object 2104 MU69 (Ultima Thule). Traveling through the belt at a distance of 6 billion km, the device was in sleep mode to save energy. Radio signals confirmed the execution of commands upon waking on June 5th. The spacecraft functioned perfectly.
Over the next 3 days, the team will collect data on tracking the navigation and send the first team to the onboard computer of the New Horizons to begin preparing for the flight to 2104 MU69. Flight training will take 2 months. It includes updating the memory, searching for data on the Kuiper belt, as well as a series of subsystem activation and an extract from a scientific tool. In August, teams will receive a long-range observation of the object. This will help improve the course of the spacecraft. On July 14, 2015, New Horizons performed the historical flight of Pluto and its satellites, extracting information about these intriguing worlds. Since then, the apparatus has deepened further, measuring the properties of the heliosphere. The span by 2104 MU69 should occur in January 2019. Now New Horizons distant from 2104 MU69 to 262 million km.
On June 5, 2018, New Horizons was located at a distance of 6.1 billion km from Earth. This is 40 times the Earth-Sun distance. The radio signal takes 5 hours and 40 minutes to travel. The 165-day hibernation, which ended June 4, was the second of two such periods of rest. The ship will remain active until 2020, after which it will transmit all data on 2104 MU69 and complete other observations in the Kuiper belt.