Are cosmic rays really causing Toyota's woes?

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posted on Mar, 24 2010 @ 12:03 AM
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Are cosmic rays really causing Toyota's woes?


www.freep.com

Cosmic rays offered as acceleration cause
Electronics makers have known for decades about "single event upsets," computer errors from radiation created when cosmic rays strike the atmosphere.

With more than 3,000 complaints to U.S. regulators of random sudden acceleration problems in Toyota models, several researchers say single event upsets deserve a close look.

The phenomenon can trigger software crashes that come and go without a trace.
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posted on Mar, 24 2010 @ 12:03 AM
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This is potentially a huge issue. Should they be able to prove that it is the rays that are causing these failures, the product liability scene will blow-up. Every electronic equipment failure that has resulted in harm or near harm to someone, be that physical or otherwise will then be attributed to a design/testing flaw.

My guess is that they are not going to find out that the rays caused this problem, but rather poor design, just simple poor design. It does not matter though, because by the nature of the technology and the falibility of the testing methodology, they will not really be able to definitively prove that it did not cause the problem. There are far to many environmental factors to conduct a reasonable, definitive test

www.freep.com
(visit the link for the full news article)



posted on Mar, 24 2010 @ 01:12 AM
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Cars have had computers for longer than the Prius, although the computerized gas pedals are new. But still...there are lots of 'sensitive' systems.

I suspect industrial espionage more than stuff like cosmic rays.

The Chinese made and bought more cars than anybody last year. And Japan's brands have been at the top of the heap for a long time. Perhaps the growth focused Chinese have decided...if you can't build a car as reliably as the Japanese can, why not sabotage them?

Sadly, I wouldn't put it past our own (US) corporate interests. They too have been having their butts kicked by the Japanese manufacturers for a while now. They've been 'eating the lunch' of EVERY auto manufacturer in the world really.

And because Toyota and Honda make lots of different stuff, they have domestic rivalries as well. So there are A LOT of suspects...

I would guess at one of or even more likely, a mix of three general principles: the first is that being #1 makes you a target. The second is that being #1 makes you go soft. The third is that this could be a 'rumor gone wild' sort of mass hysteria.

[edit on 24-3-2010 by 11andrew34]



posted on Mar, 24 2010 @ 01:21 AM
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Mwahahahahahahahahaha!!! Cosmic Rays... Wow, wouldn't it be strange if it turns out true? All Car manufacturers would then have to shape up. Thing is, I don't know of any other manufacturer that's had the Exact Same problems as Toyota has.

Now I'm waiting for someone to Jump In and say it has something to do with HAARP...

Computerised and Electronic Throttle controls have been in for a long time. My 1990 BMW 750iL. It had a Computerised Throttle and I never had a problem with it. Sorry, that's not right. I did have a problem with it, Once. It wouldn't let me go over 250kph..



posted on Mar, 24 2010 @ 01:32 AM
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reply to post by dolphinfan
 


Cosmic ray induced errors have indeed been known about for a loooonnnnngggggg time.

Cosmic ray induced errors were reasonably common in computers back in the 'core memory' days. Core memory was a physical magnetic donut with wires running through the center. The polarity of the core would flip to indicate a one or a zero bit. These devices were quite sensitive to cosmic ray errors and that is why parity correction was added.

I remember working on an IBM 370/158 that had IBM memory that was not parity checked. When we wanted more memory we got it from a third party (CDC) that used parity checking. System reliability went up (but that could have been from a variety of reasons, not just parity checking).

Today's solid state memory is less susceptible to cosmic rays, but for robust server applications Error Correcting Code (ECC) memory is still a must.



posted on Mar, 24 2010 @ 05:11 AM
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No, they arent. General motors is.



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