Computer servers 'stranded' in space

A pair of Hewlett Packard Enterprise servers were sent to the ISS in August 2017. The experiment was not carried out after returning to Earth three months after its intended return.

Together they make up the "Spicborn" laptop, a Linux system that has a super-processing power for the computer.

They were sent to see how long they were living in space with minimal specialized treatment.

After 530 days, they still work.

Their return flight was postponed after a Russian missile failed in October 2018.

Adrian Kaspergen, senior architect at HPE, said they could return in June 2019 if there was space on a flight "but they did not get a ticket right now."

The company is working with NASA to be "ready for the computer" for the first flight of Mars astronauts, which is estimated to occur around 2030. The company is also working with Space S.

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At the moment, the 20-year-old machines that control the ISS are returning data to Earth for processing. This is possible because it takes less than a second to restore the data.

But on Mars's mission, the time it takes to transfer data back and forth will grow to more than forty minutes, as the planet is millions of miles away. This means that data processing must take place on the spaceship.

Kaspersky told BBC News that the original three computers aboard the International Space Station each cost eight million dollars and took 10 years to build.

"Our servers cost thousands, instead of millions of dollars," he added at the 2019 Universal Mobile Congress (MWC) in Barcelona, ​​where HPE is offering a similar model from the ISS Destiny Module.

Spaceborne pc is now built into the roof of the real thing, Caspargin said.

While the servers themselves were not modified, they received a recommended cooling solution.

The servers were placed in a sealed box with a coolant connected to the ISS water cooling system. Hot air is routed from the computer through the coolant to cool and recycle.

Kaspergin said there were problems with excess power supplies as well as some solid state hard drives.

But he said the failure was dealt with by the self-management program that was part of the experiment.

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