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BAE Systems RAD750 On A Trip To View Mars

13 Sep 2005 | Ref. 029-2005

MANASSAS, Virginia -- BAE Systems' radiation-hardened microprocessors, aboard the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) launched August 12 from Cape Canaveral, Florida, are playing a key role in enabling National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) to examine the surface, atmosphere and subsurface of Mars.

Two RAD750® computers onboard the MRO are helping to navigate the satellite on its 7-month journey toward the Red Planet. The single-board computers will control its insertion into low orbit around the planet and also assist in the collection and transmission of information between Mars surface missions and Earth.

Researchers hope to learn more about the history and distribution of water on Mars. That information will improve the understanding of planetary climate change and will help answer whether Mars ever supported life. The orbiter will also evaluate potential landing sites for future missions.

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 that planet. The RAD750® represents the next-generation of space microprocessors and were vital in NASAs Deep Impact mission. NASA's program managers are investigating future options for the Deep Impact flyby spacecraft, which is on a trajectory to fly past Earth in late December 2007.


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, combat vehicles, surface ships, submarines, radar, avionics, communications, electronics, and guided weapon systems. It is a pioneer in technology with a heritage stretching back hundreds of years and 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 employs over 90,000 people and generates annual sales of approximately 14.8 billion through its wholly owned and joint-venture operations.

For further information, please contact:

James Mallon, BAE Systems
Tel: + 1 215-996-2729

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