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Oct 28 2015

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Color me underwhelmed

What do you think when you see an article like this?

Scientists have developed a communication solution that can allow orbiting space station in outer space to maintain uninterrupted contact with robots working on the surface of a planet.

I immediately clicked on it. How do you communicate with a robot that’s out of line-of-sight from an orbiting station? I wondered if they came up with some new comms protocol that could either wrap itself past the radio horizon or somehow be tied quantum-like to the rover. Or maybe some way to improve the AI of the rover so Jeeshit can take general commands and make smart decisions while out of comms.

No…

It’s ground stations on the planet surface. That’s neither new nor exciting. I mean, if you’re going to go the relay approach, then put crosslinks between orbiters or comms satellites so that an orbital station can always be in contact. Not only is my solution more sexy, it would likely improve the latency of the commanding signal, unless you plan on peppering Mars’ surface with ground relay stations..

Jeesh…and yawn…

Permanent link to this article: http://www.newspaceraces.com/2015/10/28/color-me-underwhelmed/

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