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NASA Chief Retiree's "Save the Houston Control Room" Program



 
 
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  #1  
Old August 11th 17, 03:09 PM posted to sci.space.policy
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Default NASA Chief Retiree's "Save the Houston Control Room" Program

On Monday, August 7, 2017 at 11:04:12 AM UTC-4, wrote:


Does anybody know of how to volunteer with the systems analysis?

Is there a like program for the Kennedy Space Center launch
control room?


I guess the first order of the project would be to turn on
the stations and see if the computers still work. Maybe there
is a "monitor mode" that reports a valid turn on state of the computer?
Or maybe the term is "standby mode".

I remember going to a talk on NASA rules of system design. A
hideous rigor of design documentation. I worry about even
finding all the design documentation for the control room.

Any ways, a standard simulator is noting other than x inputs
and x outputs. But variable electric circuit interfaces appears
an issue. A simple leveling circuit is not that hard to design
for each station.

In reality the system design for scenario input to each simulator
is the hard part. The abstract spacecraft would contain each and
every variable of state. Sensor state is distinct from navigational
state. How is a navigational report generated? I guess just use a
simulator to report navigation? Here I am very ignorant so I can
not speak to the subject any longer.


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  #4  
Old August 12th 17, 07:16 PM posted to sci.space.policy
Rob[_8_]
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Default NASA Chief Retiree's "Save the Houston Control Room" Program

JF Mezei wrote:
On 2017-08-11 11:19, Rob wrote:

Put a Raspberry Pi in each station to blink the lights and act upon
the buttons...



Is there a point in doing this versus just having a static room with all
displays off?


It was my understanding that they wanted to restore it to working
condition capable of running a demo like it was during operation.

Whether it is pointless or not, well that is another question...
  #6  
Old August 13th 17, 05:36 PM posted to sci.space.policy
Rob[_8_]
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Default NASA Chief Retiree's "Save the Houston Control Room" Program

Jeff Findley wrote:
In article ,
says...

JF Mezei wrote:
On 2017-08-11 11:19, Rob wrote:

Put a Raspberry Pi in each station to blink the lights and act upon
the buttons...


Is there a point in doing this versus just having a static room with all
displays off?


It was my understanding that they wanted to restore it to working
condition capable of running a demo like it was during operation.

Whether it is pointless or not, well that is another question...


Cool goal, but a hell of a lot of work and even more money. If running,
it would take a lot of electricity (which generates heat which
necessitates cooling, which costs more electricity). Laudable goal, but
it would cost a fortune. Things like capacitors will have to be
replaced because they do go bad after that many decades.


It is a common problem for all restoration and preservation projects.
Personally I don't see the value in preserving everything that we have
once done in working order. It would cost a lot of money, that can't
be spent on new things. When we want to keep everything we have once
built, the burden will become more and more for every generation after
us. IMHO it is better to make room for new things.

It would have been better to keep and re-digitize the magtapes that
were recorded during the missions. We would have the high-quality
pictures to look at. Even preserving image material costs money, but
less than all those physical things.
  #7  
Old August 13th 17, 07:24 PM posted to sci.space.policy
Rob[_8_]
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Default NASA Chief Retiree's "Save the Houston Control Room" Program

JF Mezei wrote:
On 2017-08-13 08:36, Jeff Findley wrote:

Cool goal, but a hell of a lot of work and even more money. If running,
it would take a lot of electricity (which generates heat which
necessitates cooling, which costs more electricity). Laudable goal, but
it would cost a fortune. Things like capacitors will have to be
replaced because they do go bad after that many decades.



Retoring the actual electronics doesn't make sense in my opinion. But
restoring the software and providing an emulated platform to run it on
and drive the displays would be valuable endeavour.

Since the moon shots have not become routine and may never happen again
in a number of lifetimes, this is something worth preserving. (a time
when the poilitical system could set goals and achieve them).

If you run the mainframe emulation on a PC, it won't be consuming that
much power nor generate lots of heat. Remember that a PC today is orders
of magnitures more power than what an IBM mainframe in the late 60s
early 1970s could do.

One could debate whether the displays in the mission control room should
be updated to energy saving LCDs or kept as old CRTs (consumer more
power etc). But if you could recreate "real time" processing of data as
it happened for each flight, it would be worth doing some "original
equipment" sacrivices such as replacing CRTs with LCDs.


I don't expect that the original software is something that you could
run in demo mode without trained operators just for display purposes.

Remember that a lot of the control had to be done by the astronauts
and ground crew. Key in verbs and nouns, enter parameters.
Without that, you will just have some simple routines that perform some
small step of the mission.

When you want to run automatic demo mode you have to add another layer
of software on top of it, that executes the procedures done by the
astronauts and ground crew. And of course you need to insert the data
obtained from the actual flight hardware.
  #8  
Old August 13th 17, 08:12 PM posted to sci.space.policy
Rob[_8_]
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Default NASA Chief Retiree's "Save the Houston Control Room" Program

JF Mezei wrote:
On 2017-08-13 14:24, Rob wrote:

Remember that a lot of the control had to be done by the astronauts
and ground crew. Key in verbs and nouns, enter parameters.
Without that, you will just have some simple routines that perform some
small step of the mission.



But if you have the tapes of telemetry received from the Apollo modules,
then you can faithfully recreate what appeared on displays in mission
control room. When you need instead of the number of satellite dishes
around the world is a PC that can generate telemetry data as it was
received in the 1970s with the same rate/timing.

(BTW, one of those satelites dishes was at Carnarvon Western Australia
where a museum was created on the site).


You would have to hope that a complete set of tapes is still available
for at least one mission.
The Apollo 11 tapes recorded at Honeysuckle Creek are known to be lost.
  #9  
Old August 13th 17, 11:07 PM posted to sci.space.policy
Fred J. McCall[_3_]
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Default NASA Chief Retiree's "Save the Houston Control Room" Program

JF Mezei wrote:

On 2017-08-13 08:36, Jeff Findley wrote:

Cool goal, but a hell of a lot of work and even more money. If running,
it would take a lot of electricity (which generates heat which
necessitates cooling, which costs more electricity). Laudable goal, but
it would cost a fortune. Things like capacitors will have to be
replaced because they do go bad after that many decades.


Retoring the actual electronics doesn't make sense in my opinion. But
restoring the software and providing an emulated platform to run it on
and drive the displays would be valuable endeavour.


Why?


Since the moon shots have not become routine and may never happen again
in a number of lifetimes, this is something worth preserving. (a time
when the poilitical system could set goals and achieve them).


Why is this something worth preserving as software emulation only?


If you run the mainframe emulation on a PC, it won't be consuming that
much power nor generate lots of heat. Remember that a PC today is orders
of magnitures more power than what an IBM mainframe in the late 60s
early 1970s could do.

One could debate whether the displays in the mission control room should
be updated to energy saving LCDs or kept as old CRTs (consumer more
power etc). But if you could recreate "real time" processing of data as
it happened for each flight, it would be worth doing some "original
equipment" sacrivices such as replacing CRTs with LCDs.


So you change all the hardware, but build a software emulator so that
you can run the old software? What's the point?


--
"Some people get lost in thought because it's such unfamiliar
territory."
--G. Behn
  #10  
Old August 14th 17, 05:15 AM posted to sci.space.policy
Fred J. McCall[_3_]
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Default NASA Chief Retiree's "Save the Houston Control Room" Program

JF Mezei wrote:

On 2017-08-13 18:07, Fred J. McCall wrote:
So you change all the hardware, but build a software emulator so that
you can run the old software? What's the point?


So you can run the missions with the recorded telemetry/voice/video
data, and with the software which controlled it back then.


What good does that do you?


Restoring the original hardware so you can power it on doesn't do much
good unless you can actually run the missions. Otherwise, you just have
everything turned on on stand=by because there is nothing actually running.

So it is more important to be able to run the software with the original
telemetry data to recreate the missions than to have the authentic
restored hardware (in my opinion).


Neither is 'important'. One (restoration of hardware, etc) is
historical. The other is merely pointless.


--
"Some people get lost in thought because it's such unfamiliar
territory."
--G. Behn
 




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