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NASA engineers using iPhone and Android apps to keep track of time on Mars

NASA engineers using iPhone and Android apps to keep track of time on Mars
It turns out the engineers at NASA are well-aware of the power of modern smartphones. As a matter of fact, some have admitted to be using their iPhones or Androids for such crucial stuff like keeping track of time on Mars.

Here's the thing: if you're on Mars, you'll be counting time in the exact same way as you do on Earth. You'll have a 24-hour day-night cycle, each hour will be 60 minutes, and each minute will be 60 seconds long. However, since 24 hours here on Earth are nothing more than the time needed for Earth to make one full rotation around its own axis, the same 24 hours on Mars happen to take slightly longer, as the Red Planet tends to rotate around itself a bit more slowly. As a result, one full day-night cycle on Mars equals 24 hours and 39.5 Earth minutes.

Now, although some of the people working at NASA are equipped with custom-built quartz watches to be able to tell what's the exact time on Mars, it looks like others prefer to rely on their trusty iPhone or Android smartphones, using a third-party app called MarsClock. The became known after a Q&A session was held on Reddit, when someone brought up the question if the NASA employees are using those special Mars watches. Here's what Surface Systems Engineer, Eric Blood, answered:

"Some of us do, but a lot of us have iPhone and Android apps with Mars time."

Well, folks, you now know what you need to do if you want to know what time it is at Curiosity's.

source: AndroidCentral

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posted on 17 Aug 2012, 05:23

1. Cesar (Posts: 140; Member since: 16 Aug 2012)


posted on 17 Aug 2012, 05:33

2. Phullofphil (Posts: 805; Member since: 10 Feb 2009)

Does not really surprise me considering how powerfull android phones are geting and al snartphones for that matter are getting. Especially if a smartphone is used for a spacific thing and one spacific task somwhat even does not even use the extra cores in the things.

posted on 17 Aug 2012, 11:55

3. vqc61 (Posts: 15; Member since: 16 May 2012)

Engineers at one of the world's premier space agencies with access to atomic clocks all over the world chose to use clocks run by $5 crystals for mission-critical time keeping? Incredible. Hope this is not typical of how things work at NASA.

posted on 17 Aug 2012, 18:10

4. joey18 (Posts: 597; Member since: 20 Jul 2010)

My question what phone are using android are alot in the market ihope they use thos metro pcs android phones my verizon phone has bad reception imagine they using prepaid phone

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