Author Topic: Well done, NASA  (Read 15703 times)

Offline mklotz

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Well done, NASA
« on: August 06, 2012, 05:26:50 PM »
Think about it.  NASA managed to deposit a pick-up truck sized spacecraft on another planet using a rocket levitated crane and this was all done autonomously!  What a masterpiece of engineering.

When I first saw the complicated deployment/landing sequence for LEM, the lunar lander, my first thought was "they'll never pull that off; there are just too many opportunities for something to go wrong."  I've never been happier to have been proved wrong.

But at least LEM had humans on board.  There was some possibility for them to make some real-time adjustments.  Mars is about half an hour away at the speed of light so any form of man-in-the-loop remote control is out of the question for this mission and rocket levitated crane scenario is a lot more complex than landing the lunar lander.

We have a lot of folks here who write/wrote code in their current/former day jobs.  Think about writing a control sequence for this mission.  You have to anticipate EVERYTHING that might go wrong and then write code to recognize and deal with those vagaries and you'll never have a chance to test your code in the actual application conditions.  Talk about sphincter tightening moments!  Oh, and if you screw up, you're going to destroy something that cost a couple billion dollars!
« Last Edit: August 06, 2012, 08:53:28 PM by mklotz »
---
Regards, Marv


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Online steamer

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Re: Well done, NASA
« Reply #1 on: August 06, 2012, 05:42:23 PM »
I was thinking of you this morning!  I tried valiantly to stay up long enough to watch it but I didn't make it.
 :DrinkPint:
Dave
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Offline Woodguy

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Re: Well done, NASA
« Reply #2 on: August 06, 2012, 06:25:49 PM »
The 360-91 Apollo online system was at the time the most complex code ever written. I wonder what they used to pull this one off. Amazing stuff.


Offline Brass_Machine

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Re: Well done, NASA
« Reply #3 on: August 06, 2012, 06:59:09 PM »
I stayed up for it... very exciting stuff.

Eric

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Re: Well done, NASA
« Reply #4 on: August 06, 2012, 07:52:11 PM »
Check out the chute photo....in process

http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/msl/news/msl20120806b.html


Dave
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Damned ijjit!

Offline mklotz

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Re: Well done, NASA
« Reply #5 on: August 06, 2012, 08:02:32 PM »
Check out the chute photo....in process
http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/msl/news/msl20120806b.html

Incredible.

It's also interesting to note that they missed their (moving) target impact zone by only two km after flying a distance of some 350 million miles.
---
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Offline gmac

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Re: Well done, NASA
« Reply #6 on: August 06, 2012, 08:12:11 PM »
I was a teenager in the sixties and all the space activity at the time was what motivated me to go into aerospace engineering. I've since worked in other fields but none were as exciting or challenging. And none seemed to be populated by so many people passionate about what they did, well except for this forum  :naughty:. Well done guys and gals!

Cheers  Garry

Offline Brass_Machine

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Re: Well done, NASA
« Reply #7 on: August 06, 2012, 08:29:36 PM »
Check out the chute photo....in process
http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/msl/news/msl20120806b.html

Incredible.

It's also interesting to note that they missed their (moving) target impact zone by only two km after flying a distance of some 350 million miles.

We need to be doing more of this stuff!!

Offline AdeV

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Re: Well done, NASA
« Reply #8 on: August 06, 2012, 09:15:04 PM »
Check out the chute photo....in process
http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/msl/news/msl20120806b.html

Incredible.

It's also interesting to note that they missed their (moving) target impact zone by only two km after flying a distance of some 350 million miles.

Pffff, that's nothing. I once drove 1000 miles, and parked within 5mm of the kerb.

 :pinkelephant:
Cheers,
Ade
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Re: Well done, NASA
« Reply #9 on: August 06, 2012, 09:15:53 PM »
NASA TV channel - gotta love it. Even my wife was mesmerized. I also thought there were just too many things that could go wrong with this landing scenario, on one hand it was logical, but on the other, crazy...

Looking forward to following the progress to satisfy my, um....curiosity.   :paranoia:

Offline mklotz

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Re: Well done, NASA
« Reply #10 on: August 06, 2012, 09:29:08 PM »
Check out the chute photo....in process
http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/msl/news/msl20120806b.html

Incredible.

It's also interesting to note that they missed their (moving) target impact zone by only two km after flying a distance of some 350 million miles.

Pffff, that's nothing. I once drove 1000 miles, and parked within 5mm of the kerb.

Wow, you're pilot material, no doubt.  I've phoned some of my cronies at Houston and they're scheduling you for the first manned mission to the sun. 
---
Regards, Marv


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Offline Raggle

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Re: Well done, NASA
« Reply #11 on: August 06, 2012, 09:49:35 PM »
Well I learned something today. NASA (and Ade) use the inferial system for large distances but as they get close, it goes metric.

So if Marv had said 1.24 miles instead of 2 Km it would have sounded impressive indeed.

Ray
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Offline AdeV

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Re: Well done, NASA
« Reply #12 on: August 06, 2012, 09:53:56 PM »

Incredible.

It's also interesting to note that they missed their (moving) target impact zone by only two km after flying a distance of some 350 million miles.

Pffff, that's nothing. I once drove 1000 miles, and parked within 5mm of the kerb.

Wow, you're pilot material, no doubt.  I've phoned some of my cronies at Houston and they're scheduling you for the first manned mission to the sun.

Thanks Marv, appreciate the introduction. Can you make sure they know that I'll only go at night? Ta :)
Cheers,
Ade
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Offline Dean W

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Re: Well done, NASA
« Reply #13 on: August 06, 2012, 11:08:24 PM »
Pffff, that's nothing. I once drove 1000 miles, and parked within 5mm of the kerb.
5mm;  That's pretty close.
Was the curb (sic; kerb) constantly moving at 59,278.91 miles per hour? 
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Offline arnoldb

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Re: Well done, NASA
« Reply #14 on: August 07, 2012, 12:21:21 AM »
I'm quite proud of this mission and it's successful landing.  Japie van Zyl who is one of the more  senior members associated with this mission was born and raised here in Namibia  ;D - one for the "local" lads then  :cheers:



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