NASA researchers choose Crystal Group rugged servers for flight experiments

HIAWATHA, Iowa, 27 May 2005. NASA researchers seeking to return the space shuttle orbiters to operational status are looking to Crystal Group Inc. in Hiawatha, Iowa, to supply rugged computer servers for airborne experiments.

HIAWATHA, Iowa, 27 May 2005. NASA researchers seeking to return the space shuttle orbiters to operational status are looking to Crystal Group Inc. in Hiawatha, Iowa, to supply rugged computer servers for airborne experiments.

Crystal officials are providing their CS500 servers to fly in the nose cones of NASA's WB-57 high-altitude research jet aircraft to collect data from onboard cameras as the NASA works toward returning to space with the schedule launch of the Space Shuttle Discovery, set for July 13 at the earliest.

Crystal's CS500, a 5U quarter-wide rack server, will be part of the NASA WB-57 Ascent Video Experiment system, better known as WAVE -- the nose cone-mounted on-board video imaging system on the WB-57 jets that will capture detailed images of how the space shuttle behaves as it climbs toward orbit.

The WB-57s operate at altitudes higher than 60,000 feet on missions as long as 6.5 hours. The aircraft can cover 2,500 miles at speeds as fast as 410 knots. The WAVE system will use Crystal's servers store images as it tracks the shuttle for about two minutes, from liftoff to separation of the solid rocket boosters.

"Shuttle video captured by the chase vehicles will help us see the launch in greater clarity than ever before," says NASA project manager Bob Page. "Along with cameras on the ground, and in and on the shuttle itself, this imaging system will provide an unprecedented look at shuttle liftoff and atmospheric flight."

Crystal CS500 server is tested to MIL-STD-810F and MIL-STD-167-1 standards for altitude, humidity, shock, and vibration. It operates in temperatures from 0 to 50 degrees Celsius. The computer is based on the 3.06 GHz Pentium 4 microprocessor, and weighs 10.65 pounds.

For more information contact the Crystal Group online at www.crystalpc.com.

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