Japan has lost contact with Hitomi, the X-ray telescope-equipped satellite it sent into space to gather data on black holes.
The $273 million floating observatory was launched only a month ago, but over the weekend it stopped responding except for one short, mysterious signal.
One clue to what went wrong may be the debris surrounding Hitomi, which has been detected by satellite-tracking organizations. That debris could be pieces of the satellite, but it also might not be.
Japan’s space program has set up an emergency headquarters to regain contact.