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Space Science

Rogue Satellite Shuts Down US Weather Services 202

radioweather writes "On Sunday, the drifting rogue 'zombie' Galaxy 15 satellite with a stuck transmitter interfered with the satellite data distribution system used by NOAA's National Weather Service (NWS), effectively shutting down data sharing between NWS offices nationwide, as well as weather support groups for the US Air force. This left many forecasters without data, imagery, and maps. Interference from Galaxy 15 affected transmissions of the SES-1 Satellite, which not only serves NOAA with data relay services, but also is used to feed TV programming into virtually every cable network in the US. NOAA's Network Control Facility reports that the computer system affected was NOAA's Advanced Weather Interactive Processing System (AWIPS) used to issue forecasts and weather bulletins which uses the weather data feed. They also state the problem is likely to recur again this month before the satellite drifts out of range and eventually dies due to battery depletion."
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Rogue Satellite Shuts Down US Weather Services

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  • by elrous0 (869638) * on Tuesday December 07, 2010 @12:00PM (#34475430)

    Goddamn Commies finally attacked! To your bunkers, citizens!

  • Rouge eh? (Score:5, Funny)

    by richy freeway (623503) * on Tuesday December 07, 2010 @12:00PM (#34475432)
    They're putting makeup on satellites now?
    • by Bigjeff5 (1143585) on Tuesday December 07, 2010 @12:06PM (#34475538)

      No, no, no, you've got it all wrong!

      The satellite is the makeup!

      A bit of rouge satellite goes extremely well with some eyeliner asteroid, and you'll want to round them out with a nice, light, gamma burst lipstick to bring it all together.

      Doesn't the solar system look so pretty now?

      • by gstoddart (321705) on Tuesday December 07, 2010 @01:47PM (#34477192) Homepage

        A bit of rouge satellite goes extremely well with some eyeliner asteroid, and you'll want to round them out with a nice, light, gamma burst lipstick to bring it all together.

        Doesn't the solar system look so pretty now?

        Ummm ... I think that might be the first make-up tips I've ever seen on Slashdot.

        Now, stop it! ;-)

    • by Annirak (181684)

      No no, it's a reference to Diablo, where the rogues wore red clothing, so everyone called them rouge!

    • by theantipop (803016) on Tuesday December 07, 2010 @12:21PM (#34475758)
      Everyone who plays WoW knows rouges are overpowdered.
    • by OverlordQ (264228)

      All kidding aside it's easy to get them confused (imo).

      Rouge is spelled as one pronounces Rogue, rohg. Rou (roh) ge (g).

      • by bhcompy (1877290)
        Actually, that would be r-ow-g. ou, as in shout
        • by OverlordQ (264228)

          The IPA for Rogue is ro<small upsilon>g r-o<small upsilon>-g The o<small upsilon> is pronrounced like owe, road, below. Given this, if you heard Rogue, you'd think Rouge.
          • by Bigjeff5 (1143585)

            He was talking about the spelling of Rouge. If you know your grammar and were to sound it out without ever hearing it first, you would think "R-ow-j". The default sound for "ou" is "ow", the default for "ge" is "j". "R-ow-j" is what you would naturally assume the correct pronunciation is for rouge.

            Rogue, were you to attempt to spell it without having seen the word before, would probably end up as "rowg" or "rohg", because that is how it sounds: "r-oh-g".

            In other words, your enunciation is shit.

      • Do you pronounce genius as "ghenius"?

      • by Bigjeff5 (1143585)

        In what universe does rou sound like roh? If anything you should naturally think the ou sounds like ow.

        A g proceeded by an e rarely sounds like anything other than a j, so you should assume r-ow-j, which gets the particulars.

      • My dog used to pronounce it "ROOOG" usually when somebody was outside the door.

    • by Grishnakh (216268)

      Does this have anything to do with Sarah Palin and her book "Going Rouge"?

  • by ZaphDingbat (451843) on Tuesday December 07, 2010 @12:01PM (#34475456)

    Bet their faces are red about this one.

    • by Monkeedude1212 (1560403) on Tuesday December 07, 2010 @12:03PM (#34475482) Journal

      Looks like we caught CmdrTaco Red Handed not proof reading his postings.

      • by vxice (1690200)
        Just leave him alone, he never gets any breaks. Whenever he posts a mistake everyone justs jumps all over it. Haven't you ever made a misprint, why can't we just leave him alone. /end Brittany Spears defender screaming.
      • Hy, "rouge" is a perfectly cromulent word!
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 07, 2010 @12:05PM (#34475508)

    lol, worse every day.

  • Nice (Score:5, Funny)

    by multipartmixed (163409) on Tuesday December 07, 2010 @12:05PM (#34475524) Homepage

    Just wait until next week when a mascara satellite knocks out the GPS network!

  • Spelling (Score:2, Informative)

    by Norin Radd (68370)

    Rogue, not rouge. It's not wearing makeup.

  • by jbeaupre (752124) on Tuesday December 07, 2010 @12:09PM (#34475582)

    Hasn't anyone called Technora yet? Space Debris Section should have been tasked to retrieve Galaxy 15 long ago.

    • by David_W (35680)

      Space Debris Section should have been tasked to retrieve Galaxy 15 long ago.

      Sorry, it'll be another 60 years or so before Half Section is operational.

  • by gman003 (1693318) on Tuesday December 07, 2010 @12:12PM (#34475620)
    Let the record show that the first eight comments were entirely devoted to pointing out a common typo in the headline, and that every response to those comments so far has been directly related to said typo. Let it not be said that Slashdot cares not for the Queen's English.
    • Let it not be said that Slashdot cares not for the Queen's English.

      Double-negatives, though... now that's another matter entirely.

      • by Myopic (18616)

        Double negatives in English are only a problem when they are used to convey a negative sense, but here they are properly used to convey a positive sense. Well, that's how I learned it anyway. In this case, it doesn't lead to confusion -- for me, at least.

    • by dzfoo (772245)

      Let the record show that yours is the ninth in a series of comments entirely devoted to pointing out a common typo in the headline.

      This one makes it ten.


    • by Myopic (18616)

      Is it common? I've never made that mistake. Anyone else want to cop to it?

    • Let it not be said that Slashdot cares not for the Queen's English.

      Really, do you have to call him a queen just because he wears makeup? You really don't know anything about his sexual orientation just from what he's wearing...

  • Space Sharks! With fricking Space Lasers!

    • Space Sharks! With fricking Space Lasers!

      I was sort of thinking the same thing... kind of... If, apparently, blasting the satellite into 10K pieces is a bad idea, what about just melting it a little bit with a powerful laser -- to destroy its electronics and transmitter? Why hasn't this been done already, if not by military, then by some intrepid DIY slashdotter? (Sharks are cool too, but that means big salt-water aquariums, and sure they can be beautiful and very rewarding, but if you don't live near the ocean it can be expensive and a real chore

  • Rouge Two: [the Y-wings are running the gauntlet toward the Death Star reactor-port] The guns - they've stopped!
    Rouge Five: [realizes why] Stabilize your rear deflectors... Watch for enemy fighters.
    Rouge Leader: They're coming in! Three marks at 2-10!
    [Rouge Two is slain by Darth Vader and his wingmen; Rouge Leader starts to panic]
    Rouge Leader: It's no good, I can't maneuver!
    Rouge Five: Stay on target.
    Rouge Leader: *We're too close!*
    Rouge Five: Stay on target!
    Rouge Leader: [shouts] Loosen up!
    [he too is picked off by Vader and Company; Rouge Five tries to escape but is fatally winged]
    Rouge Five: Rouge Five to Red leader, lost Tiree, lost Dutch.
    Red Leader: I copy, Rouge Leader.
    Rouge Five: It came from... behind!

  • Knowing the machinations behind the NFL on FOX broadcasts (double redundancy -everywhere-) I was surprised when the game dropped out and returned in 4:3 SD on Sunday, now I know they must've lost their uplink.
  • Orbiting space trash is here to stay.

    There will no money in collecting 10,000 MPH space trash until someone it sued because they didn't clean it up. Humans (or Ferengi) do nothing unless there is profit.

    • by pclminion (145572)
      Clean it up? How the fuck do you clean it up?
      • Clean it up? How the fuck do you clean it up?

        Well, I suppose we could start with a sense of humor. Or at the very least, Star Trek trivia. Come on guys, it's TUESDAY for Christ's sake. The hangover should be gone by now.

        • by pclminion (145572)
          I'm already working on Wednesday's hangover, so maybe that's it. Still struggling to get the specific reference...
  • No more satellite images? No more data and imagery??

    Back to tea leaves then.

  • by texwtf (558874) on Tuesday December 07, 2010 @12:26PM (#34475840)

    Rouge satellites?

    Are the slashdot editors drunk? This is only the latest of several simple grammatical and spelling errors in the summaries today.

  • I am sure the US public will get by without weather reports but affecting tv programming? does this mean NO TV?! I predict a riot. Maybe even a revolution. This could bring down the USA!

  • This is a "runaway" wearing rouge? A zombie runaway too? So a zombified runaway is going down the orbital highway [] wearing too much makeup, or is the headline incorrect?

    I am so confused!

    Kids these days!!

  • by GodfatherofSoul (174979) on Tuesday December 07, 2010 @12:39PM (#34476068)

    Are they slowly lumbering into different orbits and gnawing on the CPUs of any live satellites they can find?

  • I see my grandma made it to them too, with the pinching of the cheeks and all...
  • Nuke it out of orbit. It's the only way to be sure.
  • by erroneus (253617) on Tuesday December 07, 2010 @12:43PM (#34476152) Homepage

    I was beginning to wonder why it hasn't snowed here yet despite that there seems to be ample moisture and below freezing temperatures. I guess this explains it.

  • Interesting. The data download on my ancient DirecTivo stopped yesterday or Sunday. It reports one receiver getting 89% and the other 0%. I figured it was the Tivo going bad (it's been rebooting itself a lot lately), but maybe it's the satellite.

  • by sjames (1099) on Tuesday December 07, 2010 @12:59PM (#34476414) Homepage Journal

    We start with the uplink properly paying attention to it's mate in orbit and all is well. Then this painted strumpet comes sauntering by and the uplink's attention wanders. This is naturally followed by the slap to the cheek. It takes a few minutes to re-align after that.

    Intelsat is powerless to do anything about this cosmic red light district.

  • it's ROGUE (Score:4, Funny)

    by rgviza (1303161) on Tuesday December 07, 2010 @01:07PM (#34476534)

    it's ROGUE dammit! Rouge is makeup

  • by Maxo-Texas (864189) on Tuesday December 07, 2010 @01:08PM (#34476562)

    If people want to casually post loose, rouge, etc. I'm willing to let it slide.

    But having it in a headline just makes slashdot look pathetic.

    Are there no editors, are they illiterate, or do they just not care?

    • by treeves (963993)

      Pathetic? Better be careful. Next thing you know, you'll say it's stagnated and start getting modded troll!

  • They could use this wonderful network of tubes that we can shove bits through called the Internet. There's plenty of bandwidth to stream high-def TV, weather images, etc; in fact, it's done every day. The satellite network no doubt serves as an important link, but you would think that fiber optics work in a pinch. (note that this is not a weather data gathering satellite, just a weather relay)
    • That's probably good in a number of locations, most likely including pretty much everywhere that would be affected by the rogue satellite. However, at risk of being pedantic, the ISP and telco that I work for delivers Internet via satellite links because there are no roads and no land-lines from our upstream to the area we serve. Satellite is the *only* way to get there for at least another couple of years.
  • by ryanvm (247662) on Tuesday December 07, 2010 @01:16PM (#34476694)

    This is personally amusing to me because I spent half of Sunday trying to track down reports of my Android Live Wallpaper app not working properly. I guess in hindsight, it's pretty cool. I mean, it's not often that you get to lament that a rogue satellite ruined your afternoon.

    Oh, and in case you were wondering why I didn't take the opportunity to shamlessly plug my app. []

    It's a live wallpaper for Android phones that shows the nearest NWS radar imagery.

  • The outage over the weekend was NOT caused by Galaxy 15. Galaxy 15 is expected to pass by SES-1 [] on December 15.

    • by Bigjeff5 (1143585)

      You realize it doesn't have to be directly in front of it to interfere with the signal, right?

      Neither the summary nor the article ever said G-15 passed by SES-1.

      What they said was Galaxy 15's transmissions interfered with NOAA's AWIPS, which is absolutely correct. They fixed the problem by changing frequencies on the operational satellites, and everything is hunky dory.

      After Galaxy 15 passes SES-1 in a few days things should be able to go back to normal.

      Is it really that hard to actually read? Jesus.

  • by Myopic (18616) on Tuesday December 07, 2010 @01:50PM (#34477232)

    I work at a weather company and this problem turned into some hurried phone calls to staff over the weekend. I'm on the data team, but I was only peripherally involved. This outage was expected, but not expected for another six days, so we were prepared with code changes for when the problem arose, but we hadn't turned on those changes yet because we thought it would be another week almost.

    And I'm going to wrap up my post now, because I don't actually have anything interesting to say about it.

  • Quick - someone call Max Factor!!

fortune: cpu time/usefulness ratio too high -- core dumped.