IBM’s BlueBoard Technology on the Red Planet

Technology used to plan the next Mars mission is catching up with the technology of the spacecraft themselves. Engineers at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory plan to use a giant plasma-screen electronic “whiteboard,” based on IBM technology, to evaluate data captured by the 2003 Mars Exploration Rovers (MERs) once they have arrived on the Red Planet. Inspired by IBM’s BlueBoard technology, the screens are referred to as MERBoards (Mars Exploration Rover Boards), says Jay Trimble, head of the MERBoard design team at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL).