Feeds

Firemapping system put on back burner

Terror fears blamed

The next step in data security

Terrorism has delayed the launch of a new system for monitoring wild fires in the US, according to NASA engineers.

Tighter rules, prompted by heightened fears over the security of flying from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) were among "several factors" cited by the NASA researcher in charge of the project for the delay, according to CNet.

The system was due to have launched today, but having unmanned aircraft flying around is clearly not on right now and the planes will be grounded until 6 September.

Vincent Ambrosia, principal investigator of the Western States Unmanned Aerial System Fire Mission said the tests will be a stepping stone to further development of the system next year, but added: "We may be slightly held back this year due to the FAA regulations, understandably."

Ambrosia did not elaborate on which regulations were holding back the test phase of the project, nor did he list the other factors behind the delay.

NASA was due to perform several test flights of its unmanned remotely piloted Altair craft, adapted from the Predator UAV. The Predator has seen service in Afghanistan and Pakistan.

The tests were designed to demonstrate the craft's mobility, imaging, and real-time communications capabilities, NASA says.

The planes will eventually be used to survey wildfire outbreaks, sending real-time data back to the US Forest Service on the spread and temperature of the blazes. The craft will carry NASA sensors capable of discriminating temperature differences as small as half a degree Fahrenheit. This level of sensitivity will be useful when mapping the fires.

Another new piece of kit on board is NASA's Collaborative Decision Environment, technology originally developed for the Mars Exploration Rover, that makes it easier for a range of people on the ground to access, use, and interact with the data the craft will send back. ®

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
SCREW YOU, Russia! NASA lobs $6.8bn at Boeing AND SpaceX to run space station taxis
Musk charging nearly half as much as Boeing for crew trips
Boffins say they've got Lithium batteries the wrong way around
Surprises at the nano-scale mean our ideas about how they charge could be all wrong
Thought that last dinosaur was BIG? This one's bloody ENORMOUS
Weighed several adult elephants, contend boffins
Edge Research Lab to tackle chilly LOHAN's final test flight
Our US allies to probe potential Vulture 2 servo freeze
Europe prepares to INVADE comet: Rosetta landing site chosen
No word yet on whether backup site is labelled 'K'
India's MOM Mars mission makes final course correction
Mangalyaan probe will feel the burn of orbital insertion on September 24th
Cracked it - Vulture 2 power podule fires servos for 4 HOURS
Pixhawk avionics juice issue sorted, onwards to Spaceport America
City hidden beneath England's Stonehenge had HUMAN ABATTOIR. And a pub
Boozed-up ancients drank beer before tearing corpses apart
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.