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Musashi
2004-Apr-17, 07:55 PM
Does NASA use metric or imperial or both or some other measurement system or.. or..

Just wondering.

Brady Yoon
2004-Apr-17, 08:14 PM
They probably use the metric system. One thing that I'm wondering about... Did the Mars Global Surveyor really crash because of confused metric/English units?

Musashi
2004-Apr-17, 08:20 PM
I think it did; part of the consequences of the "cheaper/faster/something elser" program if I remember correctly.

Hamlet
2004-Apr-17, 08:31 PM
They probably use the metric system. One thing that I'm wondering about... Did the Mars Global Surveyor really crash because of confused metric/English units?

It was Mars Climate Orbiter and the quick answer is yes. However, as is the case with most accidents, the full story is a bit more involved.

See here (http://nssdc.gsfc.nasa.gov/planetary/text/mco_pr_19991110.txt) for more details. The FTP links at the bottom will get you the official report.

BigJim
2004-Apr-17, 08:31 PM
Mars Climate Orbiter was lost in 1999 because of a mixup in units, a casuslty of "faster, better, cheaper." Mars Global Surveyor has been in orbit since July 1997 and is still operating.

Disinfo Agent
2004-Apr-17, 08:35 PM
A-ha! I knew there was more to the story (http://www.badastronomy.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?p=52073&highlight=mars+metric#52073) . :D

Brady Yoon
2004-Apr-17, 08:36 PM
My knowledge in space exploration is severly lacking. #-o Thanks for the links.

jrkeller
2004-Apr-18, 02:25 AM
IIRC any new projects past the ISS, the metric system is to be used.

dave conz
2004-Apr-18, 06:40 AM
IIRC any new projects past the ISS, the metric system is to be used.
That would be very good news. Now if they could start using metrics consistently in their press releases, we in the rest of the world would find them easier to understand.

They are getting better at it but a lot of stories still only have American units.

milli360
2004-Apr-18, 09:12 AM
Now if they could start using metrics consistently in their press releases, we in the rest of the world would find them easier to understand.
I notice they've been using shorter words, maybe that'll help too. :)

O yeah, welcome to the board!

dave conz
2004-Apr-18, 10:13 AM
O yeah, welcome to the board!
Thanks. I think.

John Dlugosz
2004-Apr-20, 08:15 PM
But isn't the standard bolt on the ISS an American unit size, like 5/8 inch or something like that, with an extra-tall head?

tracer
2004-Apr-21, 08:13 PM
See here (http://nssdc.gsfc.nasa.gov/planetary/text/mco_pr_19991110.txt) for more details. The FTP links at the bottom will get you the official report.
So, according to the last FTP link, the team doing the delta-V calculations for the spacecraft were reading impulse data that they thought were in Newton-seconds, but actually the (ground-based) software that was generating the data was giving them the impulse data in Pound-seconds.

Kaptain K
2004-Apr-22, 10:32 AM
But isn't the standard bolt on the ISS an American unit size, like 5/8 inch or something like that, with an extra-tall head?
At least they're not using Whitworth. :roll: :o