Software Powering Falcon9 and Crew Dragon

Software powering Falcon 9 rocket and Crew Dragon capsule

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Software powering Falcon 9 and Crew Dragon

To all developers, software engineers and techies out there, this blog is for you.

As you may well know by now, Falcon 9 and Crew Dragon have successfully launched and carried Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken into orbit on May 30.

Apart from hardware, the launch wouldn’t have succeeded without using a reliable software that powers both the rocket and the capsule.

The operating system is Linux and the programming language is C++ 

Operating System: Linux FTW!

Beginning with the operating system, SpaceX Software Engineers held an Ask-Me-Anything session on Reddit seven years ago. They bluntly stated that both the Crew Dragon and Falcon 9 use one of the Linux distributions, without specifying which one exactly. The benefits of using a Linux Operating System are abundant.

For starters, it is a highly stable Operating System and not prone to crashes. 

Secondly, the OS is known for its ease of maintenance, since users have the ability to automate updating process. 

Thirdly, Linux is completely free, unlike proprietary operating systems such as Windows and Mac OS. 

Linux is also well-known for its security: since it is not a commonly used operating system, no one really cares to write viruses for it.

Programming Languages used: An overview.

According to Simply Explained, a YouTube channel, the main programming language used to power Falcon 9 and Crew-Dragon is C++. 

C++ is known for being a powerful and efficient language, alongside its ability to perform complex calculations and computations quickly. 

Moreover, C++ is known for its portability, and for being a general-purpose programming language: It is suitable for developing any software, and has the ability to work on almost every platform made in the last 40 years or so.

But C++ is not the only programming language used. According to an article published by ZDNet, Crew Dragon’s touchscreen interface is rendered using Chromium, the open-source version of Google Chrome, and JavaScript.

JavaScript is known for its speed; practically all browsers support just-in-time compilation of JavaScript code. Compilation is the concept of transforming code into an executable program. 

So there you have it: this is a simple explanation of the software used to power both Falcon 9 rocket and Crew Dragon capsule. Judging from the way everything transpired, the software sure played its part well!



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