NASA's mission countdown clock is getting a digital upgrade

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Timothy J. Seppala
December 3, 2014 12:42 AM
NASA's mission countdown clock is getting a digital upgrade

NASA's launch clock is finally moving into the digital age. The new countdown timer sports a 1280 x 360 resolution screen (which NASA admits is far from being HD) and measures in at 26 feet wide and some 7 feet tall. The $280,000 unit is a bit more capable than its predecessor (pictured above, check after the break for a shot of the new one) too: not only will it show the time until lift-off, but NASA's entire pre-launch program too. This, the firm says, will make it easier to know if a delay is intentional or a glitch in the system. It'll apparently be a lot brighter than the analog one was as well, and can even display a launchpad close-up and the timer simultaneously.

What's it up to currently? Showing images from NASA TV and a test countdown ahead of Orion's launch next week. Don't fret about the old clock, either: NASA says it'll take up residence at the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Center where it'll be a part of the "entry experience" for guests starting early next year.

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