FP TrendingApr 16, 2020 17:47:59 IST
Most companies around the world have asked their employees to work from home and maintain social distancing which will help restrict the spread of COVID-19 infection. A similar protocol is being followed by NASA for its team behind the Curiosity Mars rover.
NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory said from 20 March none of the team members were present at its Southern California Lab where the mission is based. “It was the first time the rover's operations were planned while the team was completely remote,” the space agency said in a blog.
Two days after the team sent commands to the Curiosity Mars rover, it drilled a rock sample at a location called Edinburg, the blog added.
They then decided to go completely remote and headsets, monitors and other equipment were distributed.
“We’re usually all in one room, sharing screens, images, and data. People are talking in small groups and to each other from across the room,” said Alicia Allbaugh who leads the team.
The Mars Rover team is doing the same job that it does in NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory by holding several video conferences at once. They sometimes even connect with each other on messaging apps.
The blog noted that the process requires extra effort to make sure they understand one another.
Allbaugh said that she has been monitoring around 15 chat channels at all times and juggling more than she normally would.
“We’re presented with a problem and we figure out how to make things work. Mars isn’t standing still for us; we’re still exploring,” Allbaugh added.
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