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Project Update.

Started by Dingo, October 14, 2010, 06:33:38 PM

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From the Orbit Team.


Dear Dingo:

Greetings from Orbit@Home.
Project News

We are pleased to announce that Orbit@Home is now in production mode. During the past month we have generated work-units at a rate of 300,000 per week, each one requiring about one hour of computing time on an average desktop computer. Read more about this here.

The process of preparing the astronomical data for the analysis with the Orbit@Home client, and then recombine all the results to generate an optimized search strategy for near-Earth asteroids, has been recently described in detail on the Orbit@Home website. To read more about the science behind Orbit@Home, visit here.
What's Next?

We are now analyzing the results obtained so far, and testing the latest improvements to the scientific application before deploying it and create a new series of work batches. New work-units should be generated by the end of October 2010.
Support Orbit@Home

We appreciate your generous donation of computer time. In order for Orbit@Home to become fully productive, we are now in critical need of server-grade storage equipment. To help us meet our storage requirements with hardware donations, please contact us here. For regular donations, please visit this page.
About the Planetary Science Institute

The Orbit@Home project is hosted at the Planetary Science Institute in Tucson, Arizona. PSI does research and provides educational outreach on a wide variety of topics in planetary science. To learn more about our programs go to and please consider getting more involved by becoming a "Friend of PSI".

Thanks again for your ongoing help.

-- The Orbit@Home Staff

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This is a couple of weeks old but more bad news for Orbit.

Message 6883 - Posted 24 Feb 2011 6:46:57 UTC 
During the last few months, we have started to test the near-Earth asteroid search strategy, and results look promising even if it's still too early to say anything that is statistically relevant.

The plan was to keep orbit@home running at the same time, and keep the WUs flowing to expand the set of observations used. We acquired and installed new storage, but we were not able to secure enough time and funding to do everything. Our old, 3-year grant has been spent completely. A new proposal to NASA was submitted last year to a program that just announced that will not be able to provide any funding to any proposed project because of shortage of funding at an higher level. This is shocking, as it is almost never the case that a program is not able to fund any new project. Without any dedicated funding, it is difficult to even keep the project running at a basic level, as at least a few hours of daily maintenance are necessary.

So where do we stand now?

Funding: we are committed to apply to relevant programs to secure funding to the orbit@home project. This process takes at least six more months, possibly a lot longer, but is the most viable way to support the project.

Coding continues slowly. The new run, when ready, will require some significant code changes, so we do what we can now, and as soon as we receive new funding, we should be able to start new WUs within a couple months.

Until then, all should stay pretty much as it is now, in a dormant state: no new WUs, website up but idle. But be assured that orbit@home is not dead or neglected, and I will do all I can to make it succeed. And yes, I do read every post on the forum and every personal message, but I'm not likely to write any message until there is something new to say.

I do appreciate all the users hanging around and caring for the project, and look forward to sending out good news and fresh WUs.


PS: for more info on what else kept me busy during the last year, look at my home page: