London: European `big bang` space telescope, Planck, will be turned off in two weeks` time, as it has completed its mission.
The process of disposing of the satellite, which mapped the "oldest light" in the Universe in unprecedented detail, has begun, the BBC reported.
The 515 million-pound telescope is currently some 1.6 million km from Earth and will soon end its days making a slow turn around the Sun.
European Space Agency controllers will initiate a big burn on Planck`s thrusters on Wednesday, while pushing it away from the planet into a separate orbit.
A second burn which will be made on 21 October will run the satellite`s propellant supply to exhaustion.
Steve Foley, ESA`s spacecraft operations manager for Planck said that they drain everything so there`s no possibility of having an exploding tank in the future.
Foley said that they will disconnect the batteries and switch off the transmitters, patch the software so they can never be re-activated. two tonne."