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NASA Loses Communications with Space Station for Nearly Three Hours

Feb 19, 2013 | WMFE - NASA lost communication with the International Space Station for nearly three hours Tuesday after a software upgrade caused what officials are calling a "glitch" in the system.

NASA spokesman Mike Curie says the trouble began around 9:45am.

“Ground controllers were updating the space station computer software, such as any of us might do on a daily basis," Curie says. "And when this happened, the space station’s command-and-control software computer experienced a glitch transitioning from the primary computer to the backup computer.”

Curie says these computers carry voice communications, tracking and other data through satellites, beaming that information between ground controllers and the space station. He says NASA was able to communicate with the ISS intermittently using Russian ground sites, enough to help the crew reconfigure the on-board computers and reactivate the correct software.

Communications were back up and running completely by 12:30pm. Curie says this has happened before, but it is not a common occurrence. He adds no one was in any danger from the glitch.


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