A pair of iPhones got the NASA stamp of approval and will be on board Space Shuttle Atlantis for the last shuttle mission ever.
Eat your heart out Android.
The iPhones will be running an experimental app developed by Odyssey Space Research (OSR). The app, SpaceLab, will help the crew members conduct experiments using the iphones' cameras, gyroscopes, and accelerometers.
According to OSR CEO Brian Rishikof, the iPhone 4's debut was the inspiration for the SpaceLab App, mainly because of the included Gyroscope. Because of this added functionality it became possible to develop programs that could possibly determine a vehicles orientation in space. It's no surprise then that OSR develops space navigational systems.
The four experiments will be:
- A “limb tracker,” which lets astronauts take a picture of the Earth’s limb (its curved edge). The app then estimates the iPhone’s altitude.
- A sensor calibration tool that uses camera images plus multiple sensors to calibrate the phone’s gyroscope and accelerometers.
- Latitude and longitude estimation using photos of the Earth and matching them to wireframes of coastlines.
- A test to see if space radiation affects computer memory by watching for unintended changes to single bits in the iPhones’ RAM.
You can also download the app for $1 for yourselves. Since we earthlings are bound by gravity much of the apps functionality will be simulated.