Electronic Products & Technology

QNX Software Powers Laser Camera on Discovery Flight Mission


Electronics CEL

OTTAWA — The laser camera system that helped identify damage to heat-resistant tiles on the left orbital maneuvering system pod of the Discovery space shuttle was powered by the Neutrino real-time operating system (RTOS) from QNX Software Systems.
 The Neptec laser camera system, attached to a boom at the end of the shuttle’s Canadarm, used a scanning mechanism to generate three-dimensional maps of the shuttle’s exterior surface in real time. During the mission, NASA used the generated images to identify the damage to the outside of the spacecraft.

Neptec has also used the QNX-based (advanced space vision system (ASVS), which helped guide the Canadarm in previous shuttle missions as well as on the International Space Station.
 “Our unmatched dependability has made QNX Neutrino the operating system of choice for applications where system failure is not an option — from the space shuttle to the operating room,” said QNX CEO, Dan Dodge. “We have been working with Neptec for more than a decade, developing fault-resilient OS technology for the company’s camera systems, and we are thrilled to play a role in improving the safety of space exploration.”


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