beowulf in space

MIDN Sean Jones m053546 at
Thu Apr 24 20:48:42 EDT 2003

For reference the United States Naval Academy is putting up a PowerPC
405 SoC in PC/104 form factor up as the Command and Data Handling System
of the MidSTAR I satellite slated for launch in March 2006.

Sean Jones

Armada Cluster Asst. Admin

On Thu, 2003-04-24 at 05:34, Jim Ahia wrote:
> As I was reading this thread, some things came to mind that might add to
> the discussion:
> 1 ) although Dells and Gateways are too heavy to lift into orbit,
> pc-104 systems might be the solution.  3.6 x 3.8 inch pentium-class
> motherboards with a single 5v power requirement make things much
> smaller.  It is completely possible to have each node fit into the space
> of a half-height CD-ROM drive.  Can anyone say "cluster in one box"?
> 2 ) Has anyone yet mentioned the possibility of mesh networks using
> 802.11 for robotics clustering?  Such networks of robots might make site
> construction, ship construction, and mining feasible.  
> Mining the surface of the moon is well documented to provide hydrogen,
> oxygen, aluminum, silica, and titanium.  Launching fuel & materials for
> spacecraft to an orbital construction facility might make more sense
> than the billions we are spending now, if the mine, transport, and
> construction are largely carried out by robotics under the oversight of
> a resident cluster with ground-based monitoring.
> Using a similar swarm of robots for site construction on mars prior to
> human arrival can have a major impact on mission success.
> If all robots use identical motion base and cpu, then 2 broken bots can
> be cannibalized to return one working bot to service.  
> If all of the robots that are currently recharging batteries are added
> to the cluster as mains-connected nodes, then a cluster of sorts is in
> effect to speed control processing of the 'hive'.  This is assuming that
> the central site has the main power supply system online, be it solar,
> nuc, whatever.
> -Jim Ahia
> -makenamicro at
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   /\                        |                       Sean Jones
  /  \     _          __   __|  __                   MIDN   USN
 /====\  |/ \  /\/\  /  | /  | /  |               m053546 at
/      \ |    |    | \_/| \_/| \_/|         United States Naval Academy
                                                Annapolis, MD 21412

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