Geek Squad has nothing on NASA. After shutting itself down on July 2, the Curiosity rover is back to full operations after NASA went out-of-this-world for tech support. The problem with the rover was found to be a “software mismatch in one mode of how image data are transferred on board.”
The fix? Avoid the problematic mode. NASA prides itself on redundancies and Curiosity can transmit via other methods that avoid the corrupted transmission mode.
Hey, it beats the Earth way of did you unplug the router? Reset it? Yeah, I felt like sitting on hold for 2 hours for you to tell me. Tech support could learn a thing or two from our space agency. Nearly 60 million miles of distance and the rover is back to science today. Quicker than setting up an appointment time for the technician to miss.
Curiosity fired off a tweet yesterday announcing it was back on the case of discovering the secrets of Mars.
— Curiosity Rover (@MarsCuriosity) July 11, 2016
Curiosity Proves Resilient
The rover has entered safe mode on several occasions, most in 2013. Those were deemed serious, and the team at NASA/JPL had to restore software to the rover from backups.
With the rover back on track, it can enjoy its recent mission extension of two years. Hopefully, it will spot water on the red planet. There is a chance the mission could be extended even further thanks to the rover’s plutonium-238 power supply. It has a mission life of 15 years, but NASA expects its batteries or other parts to break down long before then.
NASA may luck out and get the endurance of Opportunity, which could lead to untold discoveries as the space agency gears up for the Mars 2020 rover arrival.