Programming Note: This site will be on break through the holidays and return in January. Be sure to subscribe or check back for updates!

Snippet: The Mutant PowerPC Chip in the Curiosity Rover ☇

Shared on August 7, 2012

Pretty amazing how NASA is doing so much with so little, as Chloe Albanesius explains for PC Magazine:

According to NASA, Curiosity is equipped with just 2GB of flash memory…It clocks at up to 200 megahertz…There’s also 256MB of RAM and 256KB of electrically erasable programmable read-only memory in Curiosity’s calculating engine…Curiosity runs a BAE RAD 750 processor, a radiation-hardened version of the IBM PowerPC 750. According to BAE, the first RAD 750 processors were used in 2005 on Deep Impact, XSS-11, and Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter missions. They can function at temperatures between -55 degrees and 125 degrees Celsius; Mars temperatures can go as low as -153 and as high as 20 degrees, NASA said.

So it’s running a slow, but tough, PowerPC 750 (aka G3)…Where have I seen that before?

Snippets are posts that share a linked item with a bit of commentary.