'Rebooted' satellite loses thruster capability
'Rebooted' satellite loses thruster capability

An ambitious plan to revive a forsaken NASA satellite and return it to Earth orbit ended in disappointment Wednesday when engineers conceded that a failure in the spacecraft's propulsion system made it impossible to fire thrusters and alter the probe's flight path. "There's only so much you can do before you have to say, 'It's dead, Jim,' " said Keith Cowing, a former NASA astrobiologist and a spokesman for the privately-run ISEE-3 Reboot Project, which operates out of a converted McDonald's restaurant at NASA's Ames Research Center in Mountain View, Calif. Unable to nudge the aging probe from its orbit around the sun, project engineers...