Mars Curiosity Rover is frozen due to a software glitch


Mars Curiosity Rover is frozen due to a software glitch

NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover is frozen due to a system failure. This is due to a software fault which leaves the rover unaware of its position and attitude. The rover stores data such as the local landscape, the location of its robotic arm , nearby obstacles, slope of the ground and the directions its instruments are pointing in its memory chips. It’s this data which enables the rover to move on mars safely with awareness of its location on Mars. It is through this data that the rover moves on Mars without bumping into obstacles it faces so it won’t get damaged.

Because of the distance between Mars and Earth the earth crew can not directly control the rover realtime. The instructions sent from here takes some time to get executed in the rover. This means the rover has to have some intelligence level to control itself and to avoid damage while moving. This is where the information stored in its memories is important. If it has a problem with this memory it freezes as a safe mode to avoid damage to itself.

NASA said that something went wrong during the past few days of operation and the rover has lost the above said data. So the rover went into safe mode and froze.

However the communications with the earth are unaffected and are still performing well. So NASA plans to send the rover instructions about its current position and other required data as soon as possible to keep the rover running on Mars again. These set of instructions will revive the rover back again when the transmission is received by the rover on Mars.

NASA also hopes to find out what caused the rover to lose data and freeze, so the same fault will not occur again.

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