Fostex FR2LE chosen for blast off with NASA
Fostex FR2LE chosen for blast off with NASA.
Fostex is pleased to announce that the FR-2LE Field Recorder has been selected by NASA to travel on the Space Shuttle (STS) and International Space Station (ISS) in the autumn of 2008 as the primary audio capturing device.
Greg Smith, who for over 20 years has been working with IMAX Space Systems developing sound recording systems to fly aboard the Space Shuttle and International Space Station, notes that his role was "to choose a workable recorder and train the astronauts who would be doing the actual recording in space." Having graduated from analog cassette to a DAT recorder, NASA deemed that IMAX was ready to fly again after a long hiatus, and needed to update the recorder.
The factors considered were: small (hand-held best), weight; ease of operation; Alkaline battery powered and easy to swap out batteries; rugged recorder shell; XLR mic inputs with good mic preamps; flexibility in recording formats; ease and clarity of monitoring; CF-card based; responsiveness from manufacturer to solve problems; and getting questions answered quickly. Smith says, "The FR-2LE was, as Goldilocks says, 'just right'." After extensive testing by NASA, it passed with flying colors and IMAX approved it for the project.
The maiden flight of the Fostex FR-2LE in currently scheduled for sometime in the Fall of 2008. Smith says, "IMAX is extremely excited to see how the unit performs in the challenging and forbidding environment of space travel. We have high hopes...as high as the stars and wherever our travels take us."
The pictures below were taken at the Goddard Space Flight Center in Maryland in March 2008. It is called a "clean room" environment. It cuts down on dust particles that might make their way onto hardware which is bound for space. Every particle of dust can be dangerous.