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BAE SYSTEMS RAD750 Microprocessor To Help NASA Study Comet

18 Jan 2005

BAE Systems radiation-hardened microprocessors have begun a six-month, 83-million mile journey on NASAs Deep Impact mission to study the nucleus of comet Tempel 1. The mission was successfully launched from Cape Canaveral on January 12.

Deep Impact will be the first space mission to make contact with a comet’s surface. In July 2005, the spacecraft will launch an 820-lb. probe into the nucleus of comet Tempel 1 to reveal what is underneath its icy surface.

BAE Systems RAD750 microprocessors, manufactured at its Manassas, Virginia., facility, will process and help return the data of the probes collision to scientists on Earth. The three RAD750 computers will also help navigate the satellite to the comet and maintain precise position while the advanced telescopes on-board record the event.

“This mission will increase scientists understanding of comets,” said Cesare Caprio, space technology manager for BAE Systems at Manassas. Our RAD750 computers are critical to provide this data back to Earth and provide scientists the first-ever look at the nucleus of a comet.

BAE Systems has a 20-year history of providing radiation-hardened solutions for U.S. space programs. Its RAD6000 computers were installed on each of the still-broadcasting Mars Rovers - the only control and data computers aboard the two Rovers - to execute flight, landing and exploration operations on Mars. The RAD750 represents the next-generation of space microprocessors.


BAE Systems is an international company engaged in the development, delivery and support of advanced defence and aerospace systems in the air, on land, at sea and in space. The company designs, manufactures and supports military aircraft, surface ships, submarines, fighting vehicles, radar, avionics, communications, electronics and guided weapon systems. It is a pioneer in technology with a heritage stretching back hundreds of years. It is at the forefront of innovation, working to develop the next generation of intelligent defence systems.

BAE Systems has major operations across five continents and customers in some 130 countries. The company has more than 90,000 people and generates annual sales of approximately 12 billion through its wholly-owned and joint venture operations.
BAE Systems North America is one of Americas foremost national security, aerospace and information systems companies. It is a leading provider of electronic and information-based systems and knowledge-based solutions that meet our customers mission effectiveness and operational safety needs. BAE Systems North America employs more than 30,000 people at sites across the United States and the United Kingdom and generates more than $5 billion in annual sales.

BAE Systems Information & Electronic Systems Integration Sector (IESI) is a leader in situational awareness, electronic attack and defensive systems solutions for the U.S. battle space market. It provides and supports innovative capabilities-based solutions for U.S. Defense, Intelligence and Homeland Security customers. IESIs 9,500 employees are located in eight states and several overseas locations. The Information & Electronic Warfare Systems unit is headquartered in Nashua, New Hampshire.

BAE Systems, innovating for a safer world.

For further information, please contact:

Marianne Murphy, BAE Systems Information and Electronic Warfare Systems
Tel: +1 603 885 2812

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