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Sanjib.A
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re: Updated: How Mars rover got its 'dream mode'
Sanjib.A   8/19/2012 4:55:24 AM
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If I have understood it correctly, the same nuclear power source also maintains workable environmental conditions for the instruments on the rover irrespective of harse climatic fluctuations on Mars...continuously. Hence, it is required to avoid unnecessary power wastage in order to maintain power for the mission time (2 years??)...my two cents.

SumeetKumar
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re: Updated: How Mars rover got its 'dream mode'
SumeetKumar   8/17/2012 11:12:33 PM
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If the rover has a plutonium based power source, why is it necessary to have a power saving mode? If the energy is not consumed, wouldn't it be dissipated as heat?

Sparky_Watt
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re: Updated: How Mars rover got its 'dream mode'
Sparky_Watt   8/17/2012 9:49:05 PM
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Why do you refer to the maintenance electronics as "avionics"? I thought that designated airplane instrumentation.

george.leopold
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re: Updated: How Mars rover got its 'dream mode'
george.leopold   8/17/2012 1:33:54 PM
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No doubt there's a PR angle to Curiosity's "dream mode" since the technology itself isn't really pushing the envelope. What is, of course, is the application: an autonomous vehicle monitoring its own systems from an average distance of about 140 million miles.

bobdvb
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re: Updated: How Mars rover got its 'dream mode'
bobdvb   8/17/2012 7:35:46 AM
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In reality we have been making products with this type of functionality for years. Most set-top boxes we make use a micro-controller for external interfacing and sensing. They perform a power management function, receive remote IR commands and schedule wake-ups. I credit them with a success because the NASA approach is much more expensive but much more powerful, I imagine their FPGA based design is able to monitor the fine data from a wide range of sensors and make decisions, rather than our simple listen and wake logic.

Robotics Developer
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re: Updated: How Mars rover got its 'dream mode'
Robotics Developer   8/17/2012 12:26:57 AM
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I think that using a FPGA to provide basic instinct and reactions to save power is a great idea! Not a new one, I have been doing that for years when I was driving home from yet another late night when I had 1.5hr commute times (kidding really!)... I do like the idea of a smaller processor playing baby sitter so the mom/dad can nap..

vasanth kumar d
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re: Updated: How Mars rover got its 'dream mode'
vasanth kumar d   8/16/2012 4:52:58 AM
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Especially the so called "dream mode". I expect this term attracts the marketing gurus associated with general purpose microcontrollers and microprocessors. Then the new ad will say "The lowest power dream mode microcontroller in the world...".

Sanjib.A
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re: Updated: How Mars rover got its 'dream mode'
Sanjib.A   8/16/2012 3:16:50 AM
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Thanks George! Yeah...India's mission Mars probe was approved this month. Looking forward for more happenings on this mission.

Kinnar
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re: Updated: How Mars rover got its 'dream mode'
Kinnar   8/15/2012 7:22:43 PM
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It is a great piece of Engineering Design that has started successfully walking on a no man's land. Lets see for how much time it is being able to roam over the red planet. It is tough to predict that How much the information obtained from Mars will be useful to mankind but the Dream Mode and the Robot design will surely help the Automobile industries on technical fronts.

george.leopold
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re: Updated: How Mars rover got its 'dream mode'
george.leopold   8/15/2012 7:00:01 PM
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Speaking of heating, JPL reports that temperatures at Gale Crater are greater than their models predicted, and therefore so is Curiosity. Temps will undoubtedly drop when the rover starts climbing the sides of the 18,000-foot central peak, Mount Sharp. The plutonium power source should make continuous operation much easier than the solar-power Opportunity and Spirit rovers.

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