Planck space telescope shuts down after 45 years of observing the universe

After nearly 4.5 years of watching the stars, the Planck telescope is officially out of action. European Space Agency scientists have shut off the observation satellite now that it has both finished its mission and parked in a "permanent hibernation" orbit around the Sun. The telescope accomplished a lot during that short lifespan, however -- by creating a detailed map of cosmic background radiation, Planck gave us a snapshot of the early universe that will help us understand the evolution of space. Researchers still haven't finished studying Planck's findings, which suggests that the spacecraft's legacy will last well beyond the final transmission.