Single Event Upset

The one strange benefit of being in different time zones is listening to middle-of-the-night radio in the daytime. This led me to the pleasure that was hearing Dr Karl.

So, here’s the kind of item he illuminates. The Voyager spacecrafts. Launched in the 70s, they’re currently leaving our solar system, travelling at around 20km per second. And in 296,000 years will pass 4½ light-years from the star, Sirius.

There’s no fuel left now, and we can’t really pass on instructions. So they are vulnerable to Single Event Upset.

Our Sun emits radiation, which in the form of a solar wind can hit the ship, connect with an on-board microchip and change a One to a Zero, and so alter instructions.

SEU, as the phenomenon appears abbreviated to, struck me as fascinating.

In the heat of a Sales campaign, there are plenty of such solar winds. Unseen sparks that can herald an invisible knock-on to change some status on our bid.

It is of course, perilous to predict the future. Yet there can be one or two key flares that when they strike, derail our ambitions. If you know what these may be, then you can at the very least try and shape your deal to minimise their appearance or impact.

The classic I guess is the competitive pants-drop. Just when you think you’ve secured glory in a tight finish, the price of your final opponent suddenly goes through the floor. Get that value acceptance early to avoid the binary switch.

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