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Tuesday, September 17 • 3:10pm - 4:00pm
Building the Deep Space Data Center: How Linux and Open Source Technologies are Enabling Asteroid Mining - Ray Ramadorai & Marc Allen, Planetary Resources

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When talking about spacecraft technology, “state of the art” and “disruptive” are not descriptors that immediately come to mind. Deep space vehicles built via traditional methods are extremely conservative, due to the requirement that they cannot fail. Planetary Resources, the asteroid mining company, has a different strategy: develop low cost spacecraft that are engineered to create highly reliable systems from less expensive, commercial components. Once the spacecraft has become a commodity, it can rapidly evolve and keep pace with modern technology, and failure of any one spacecraft is not catastrophic. This is crucial to commercial space exploration and development, and is a key part of the Planetary Resources strategy. In order to make this a reality, we are adopting philosophies that are common to modern data centers and leveraging many technologies that are ubiquitous in cloud computing. In this talk we will describe how we use embedded and desktop Linux, virtualization, software redundancy, and web technologies to build spacecraft in new ways. We will also illustrate interesting parallels to conventional applications, and talk about the challenges of using open source and commodity hardware in the space environment.

avatar for Marc Allen

Marc Allen

Senior Embedded Systems Engineer, Planetary Resources
Marc Allen joined Planetary Resources as a Senior Embedded Systems Engineer in 2012, with a primary focus on software engineering and architecture. Marc worked at the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory for five years as a flight software engineer prior to joining Planetary Resources. Having worked on a wide variety of projects, ranging from renewable energy to airborne imaging spectrometers and the Mars Science Laboratory’s entry, descent, and... Read More →
avatar for Ray Ramadorai

Ray Ramadorai

Planetary Resources
Ray joined Planetary Resources as Principal Avionics Engineer in 2011. Ray’s prior experience includes the product engineering, design engineering, and architecting of many of Intel's flagship microprocessors, including Intel’s first dual core processors. As an architect, he focused on CPU power efficiency and microcode, specifically on the Core i7. He has authored several papers on power efficiency/survivability, and holds several... Read More →

Tuesday September 17, 2013 3:10pm - 4:00pm
Celestin A

Attendees (27)