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View Full Version : Mars Probe has a glitch


Mr. Anderson
Aug 7, 2003, 01:07 PM
What is it with probes to Mars - the track record is terrible. Makes you wonder if there isn't some sort of power or force acting against us exploring there....;)

http://www.cnn.com/2003/TECH/space/08/07/marsrover.fail.ap/index.html

I hope it gets fixed.

D

mactastic
Aug 7, 2003, 02:10 PM
Originally posted by Mr. Anderson
What is it with probes to Mars - the track record is terrible. Makes you wonder if there isn't some sort of power or force acting against us exploring there....;)

http://www.cnn.com/2003/TECH/space/08/07/marsrover.fail.ap/index.html

I hope it gets fixed.

D

Little green sabateurs?:D

patrick0brien
Aug 7, 2003, 03:33 PM
:rolleyes:

Powerbook G5
Aug 7, 2003, 08:16 PM
Maybe this is why NASA has been benchmarking G5s...getting tired of all the glitches..."Hi, we're NASA and we're switchers". :D

MrMacMan
Aug 7, 2003, 08:38 PM
I can imagine

'AT 400 MILLION EACH WE CAN'T GET THE BEST PARTS IN THE BUISNESS?'
Sorry Sir, the better parts were 40-50 million each'

:rolleyes:

What the hell do they even use for the wiring?
Pure Gold?

With diamonds to protect it or something?

:confused:

Glitch, ech.

Stelliform
Aug 7, 2003, 08:44 PM
Originally posted by MrMacman
What the hell do they even use for the wiring?
Pure Gold?

With diamonds to protect it or something?

:confused:


I know this is a little Off Topic, but I know a guy who bought speaker wires for $30,000!! We are talking 8 foot speaker wires!

He asked me how to get better TV picture quality on his PC, I told him I grew up on Antenna TV, so anything that wasn't fuzzy was awesome to me. :D

ok On Topic...

I am with Mr. A here. I think there are some little green sabators. I mean this is getting ridiculas! Didn't Russia lose ome Mars probes too?

mactastic
Aug 7, 2003, 08:52 PM
Well, that one time was totally our fault for not getting everyone together on which units were being used. I don't think the little green spaceship-wreckers had much to do with that one.:p

Powerbook G5
Aug 8, 2003, 12:46 AM
I remember in elementry school learning to use conversions...you'd think a team of rocket scientists could get it right if a group of 7 year olds can do it between juice and cookie breaks and nap time...:rolleyes:

patrick0brien
Aug 8, 2003, 09:27 AM
Originally posted by Powerbook G5
Maybe this is why NASA has been benchmarking G5s...getting tired of all the glitches..."Hi, we're NASA and we're switchers". :D

-Powerbook G5

Well, if that were to happen, they'd better really do better, faster, and cheaper, otherwise Steve'll look really bad.

conversions...you'd think a team of rocket scientists could get it right

True, but in speaking with a person I know at NASA, it was a communication issue. Some of the scientists didn't know that there was a conversion required - that's what crashed it.

It's the little things that get you - like little green men :D

Mr. Anderson
Aug 8, 2003, 09:33 AM
One of the biggest issues with computers in space is that they have to be radiation hardened. So you're not going to get the processing power that you'd get on the desktop. These chips are made by only a few companies and the ones on the rovers are made by my new parent company, BAE Systems.

The speeds and technology are a couple years behind the main stream - I'll try and dig up the specs on the cpus for the current Mars mission, but I'd be very surprised if they had clock speeds over 1 GHz.

D

Mr. Anderson
Aug 8, 2003, 09:41 AM
Very cool and even worse performance than I thought.

The ones in the current Mars probe and landers is a RAD6000

35 MIPS at 33 MHz (OMG!!)
32-bit RISC Super Scalar Single Chip CPU
8K Byte Internal Cache

Just be glad you're not having to use a computer in space! :D

But the new one the RAD750 - The RAD750 architecture supports an industry-leading 240 million instructions per second (MIPS) and operates at speeds of 133 MHz and greater.

Woo-hoo! 133 MHz!!!!! ;)

http://www.spacedaily.com/news/space-electronics-02b.html

wdlove
Aug 8, 2003, 02:14 PM
I'm very sad to hear that yet another Mars Probe is having a glitch. From the information posted by Mr. Anderson NASA definitely need to increase its processing speed. Wonder if NASA itself is using archaic PC's?

Mr. Anderson
Aug 8, 2003, 02:19 PM
Originally posted by wdlove
Wonder if NASA itself is using archaic PC's?

No, not at all. They're just using these slower systems in space because they have to protect against radiation.

D

wdlove
Aug 8, 2003, 03:00 PM
Originally posted by Mr. Anderson
No, not at all. They're just using these slower systems in space because they have to protect against radiation.

D

What type of PC is NASA using Mr. Anderson? Do you think they will come up with a radiation system that will allow a faster processor soon?

Mr. Anderson
Aug 8, 2003, 03:22 PM
Are you talking about in space or on land?

They use everything and then some including having access to super computers.

Eventually you'll see faster computers in space, but they'll always be behind terrestrial systems unless they find a way to put shielding on the whole computer/probe/ship that makes it unnecessary to shield the cpus.

D

patrick0brien
Aug 8, 2003, 03:38 PM
Originally posted by wdlove
What type of PC is NASA using Mr. Anderson? Do you think they will come up with a radiation system that will allow a faster processor soon?

-wdlove

Don't forget that the radiation being discussed is pretty mich every type you can think of. Alpha particles, Beta particles, Cosmic rays, Magnetic, elecromagnetic, electrostatic buildup, X-Rays, microwaves, A little bit of Gamma rays, and not to mention heat radiation from Infrared.

Then you have micrometeoroid protection.

All of this, then balanced with the weight requirements, really cramps the IC's flexibility.

And also as die's shrink, the vulnerability of the chips increases.

This is why in the days of ENIAC, only a few tubes (transistors = Bits) would blow in the presence of an EM pulse from an atomic blast. This is why the EMP effect wasn't really detected until later. The circuitry was too bulky and tough by nature.

It wasn't until the proliferation of the microchip invented in 1958 did we see significant damage by EMP's.

Now, with the 65,000,000 transistors on a 1cm^2x20-layer piece of silicon, even a lightning strike within 100yards can cause fatal damage.

So placing a P4 or Power4 on an interplanetary would be naaaaasty.