Jamie's Blog

Friday, February 23, 2007

Mars rovers get an update



The mars rovers just recently got an update to their software that should allow them to keep from getting confused by large rocks that are in the way. Since the lag time between earth and mars is about 20 minutes, the rovers often have to act in a semi-independent fashion. The scientists will tell the rover to go towards a certain location, but if the rover has any issues in following that command, it will have to deal with them itself. Previously, if the rover found a large object in it's path, it could get confused and require input from NASA before it could get around it. This was due to the limited planning abilities when it was choosing a route. Now it can plan and map out a path up to 50 meters ahead.

You can read about the problem and the update here.

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