How do we get information from spacecraft?
Space telescopes, space probes, landers, and robot rovers all need to communicate with people on Earth. They need to receive commands from Earth and send the data they collect back to Earth. Special tools are needed to do this. All spacecraft have a special antennae which can send and receive information by using radio signals. Radio signals carrying commands to the spacecraft are sent out by powerful radio dishes on Earth. These radio dishes also receive the information sent to Earth by the spacecraft. NASA spacecraft operating well out of Earth's orbit use the Deep Space Network (DSN).