Mobiles in Space
Google and Apple both took advantage of NASA’s last space launch last week by launching its own mobile technology. Google’s Samsung Nexus S and Apple’s iPhone are among a number of technologies onboard the Shuttle Atlantis. They will be used to carry out tasks normally carried out by the astronauts such as stock taking. Interestingly the Nexus S is being stored in an experimental sphere which is propelled by thrusters, and can be operated with the help of any of the crew.
One other interesting fact is that the Samsung smartphone has more computing power that the onboard equipment which currently does the same tasks. The iPhone 4 is being used for other tasks, and will run a specially created application called ‘SpaceLab for iOS’. It is believed the crew will make use of the smartphone’s camera’s, gyroscopes and other features.
Experiments being carried out will include four to test the effects of space radiation on computer memory. Using a smartphone is thought to be great to use for this purpose as the results can be extrapolated onto a space ship’s computer.
NASA’s Shuttle Atlantis was finally launched last Friday with millions around the globe watching it live. It nearly didn’t happen as bad weather was causing delays. The Shuttle is visiting the International Space Station to take necessary supplies on its 12 day mission. It will also be last of its kind which according to reports has cost $196 billion since it was first used during the 1990s.