NASA Seeks Next-Generation Spacecraft Onboard Computing Processor

OSIRIS-REx spacecraftNASA has kicked off its hunt for a processor based on the ARM architecture for use aboard the space agency’s and U.S. Air Force’s future manned and unmanned spacecraft, Military & Aerospace Electronics reported Tuesday.

John Keller writes NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center released a solicitation Monday in search of a radiation-hardened, multicore processor under the High Performance Spaceflight Computing Processor Chiplet program.

NASA wants potential industry partners to develop the processor within four years using the Radiation Hard By Design standard cell libraries and the ARM A53 processor design, according to the report.

The processor will be applied to military surveillance and weapons systems, spacecraft, habitats, vehicles and exploration platforms, Keller reports.

The report said the processor will perform command and data handling, guidance navigation and control and communications tasks and that the chipset will incorporate Serial RapidIO for high-bandwidth communications and other interfaces.

NASA intends for the project to produce a processor behavioral model, prototype processors, processor evaluation boards and system software, the report added.

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