Space telescope Hubble become 15 years old today. In his 15 years of service the Hubble telescope made numerous groundbreaking observations of ancient galaxies, nearby planet-building dust disks and exploding starts that led to the suggestion that the universe is expanding at an accelerating rate.
The anniversary comes amid renewed hopes for the survival of Hubble, which has fans among scientists, legislators and amateur skywatchers. Without new batteries and stabilizing gyroscopes, the craft will fail after 2007, engineers predict. But NASA's new chief, Michael Griffin, says he will reconsider a shuttle rescue mission that earlier had been ruled too risky.