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Xerox DocuShare Software Helps NASA Share Data Mined by Mars Rovers

22 Jun, 2004

Xerox DocuShare Software Helps NASA Share Data Mined by Mars Rovers

Millions of miles deep into space, NASA's two Mars Exploration Rovers are busy mining data about the red planet - and then NASA project personnel are analyzing their findings and using Xerox Corporation's DocuShare Enterprise Content Management software to create an out-of-this-world information collection that can be easily accessed and exchanged by Mars project members anywhere.

NASA scientists and engineers extensively used the Web-based system during the development phase of the Mars Exploration mission for daily storing and exchange of a variety of planning documents. DocuShare also allows scientists to share various data that have been continuously transmitted since the two Rovers - "Spirit" and "Opportunity" - landed in January and began to roam the surface of Mars. Currently, there are hundreds of files - including photos and data about surface temperatures, project summaries, sensor readings, and the angles of the Rovers' robotic arms - uploaded into DocuShare.

The DocuShare system comprises a vast online library that is available for live exchange, 24 hours a day. More than 1,000 scientists, engineers and university team members worldwide rely on DocuShare to quickly, easily and simultaneously access NASA Jet Propulsion Lab's (JPL's) more than 100,000 files and 100 gigabytes of organized mission data.

"Since 1998, NASA JPL scientists have used DocuShare to collaborate closely on a series of high-profile projects, leading up to the Mars Exploration Rover mission," said David Smith, vice president and general manager, Xerox DocuShare Business Unit. "DocuShare has played a key role in providing reliable and common access to critical information. DocuShare helps NASA JPL be more productive by providing real-time access to data and eliminating bottlenecks caused by working with multiple systems."

The DocuShare system runs on a central Solaris server and supports users across all platforms including Windows and Linux. In addition to the team supporting the Mars Exploration Rover project, more than 5,000 other people are using DocuShare for different active projects at NASA JPL. In total, the Xerox DocuShare content and document management system houses 700 gigabytes of data and manages more than 300,000 files for the space program.


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