NASA Team Salutes Spitzer Space Telescope

NASA JPL Videos Video • January 31st, 2020 •

NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope’s mission concluded on Jan. 30, 2020, at the agency's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. After more than 16 years of studying the universe in infrared light, the spacecraft entered a state known as safe mode and ceased science operations.

Launched in 2003, Spitzer revealed previously hidden features of known cosmic objects and led to discoveries and insights spanning from our own solar system to nearly the edge of the universe. 

For more information on the Spitzer Space Telescope, go to  

NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, conducts mission operations and manages the Spitzer Space Telescope mission for the agency's Science Mission Directorate in Washington. Science operations are conducted at the Spitzer Science Center at Caltech in Pasadena. Spacecraft operations are based at Lockheed Martin Space in Littleton, Colorado. Data are archived at the Infrared Science Archive housed at IPAC at Caltech. Caltech manages JPL for NASA.

Lockheed Martin in Sunnyvale, California, built the Spitzer spacecraft, and during development served as lead for systems and engineering, and integration and testing. Ball Aerospace and Technologies Corporation in Boulder, Colorado provided the optics, cryogenics and thermal shells and shields for Spitzer.

Ball developed the Infrared Spectrograph (IRS) instrument, with science leadership based at Cornell University, and the Multiband Imaging Photometer for Spitzer (MIPS) instrument, with science leadership based at the University of Arizona in Tucson. NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, developed the Infrared Array Camera (IRAC) instrument, with science leadership based at the Harvard Smithsonian Astrophysics Observatory in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Video Credit: NASA/JPL