Comprehensive coverage

NASA will soon launch a humanoid robot to the International Space Station

The robot Robonaut 2 or R2 is the next generation robot from the Decutoros series, which was specially developed to function in a space environment by NASA and General Motors.

The R2 robot in action for its launch to the International Space Station. Photo: NASA
The R2 robot in action for its launch to the International Space Station. Photo: NASA
Later this year, NASA will launch the first humanoid robot into space, so that it will become a permanent resident of the International Space Station. Robonaut 2, or R2, is being developed jointly by NASA and General Motors so that it can work alongside humans under a cooperative agreement to develop helper robots, whether they are intended to help astronauts in space or work in General Motors' manufacturing plants on Earth (For news about the first Robonaut, from 2004).

The robot that weighs about 135 kg contains a head and a body with two arms and two hands. R2 will be launched on the shuttle Discovery as part of the STS-133 mission scheduled for September. After arriving at the station, engineers will monitor the robot and test how it works.

R2 will be limited to operations in the Destiny laboratory on the space station. However, future improvements and further adaptations will allow him to move more freely within the interior space of the station or even outside the complex.

"The project demonstrates the clear promise that future generations of robots will be able to assist humanity both in space and on Earth, not as replacements for humans but as companions who can perform support missions," says John Olson, director of the Space Systems Integration Office at NASA Headquarters in Washington. . "The combined potential of humans and robots is an excellent example that the whole is greater than its parts. They will allow us to move forward and achieve more and more goals that previously seemed impossible."

The expert robot will not only look like a human but it has also been designed to work like a human, with hands and arms resembling their human counterparts. R2 will be able to use the same tools that the station's crew members use. In the future, the great advantage of humanoid robots in space will be as assistants to astronauts during spacewalks or for difficult or dangerous tasks for humans. Currently R2 is only a prototype and does not have the protection required to survive outside the space station in the extreme temperatures of space.

Testing the robot inside the station will provide an important intermediate environment in it. R2 will be tested in a micrometer and will be subjected to the radiation station and under the electromagnetic interference environment. The interior activity on the station will provide performance data regarding the robot's ability to work alongside the astronauts. As developments on the ground progress, station staff members will be able to receive hardware and software to update R2 and allow it to perform new missions.

R2 is currently undergoing extensive testing ahead of its flight. Among other things, it is tested in vibration, vacuum and radiation test environments along with other test procedures by both NASA and GM staff. In the future, the automaker plans to use the technologies developed for R2 in advanced vehicle safety systems and applications in manufacturing plants.

The extreme levels of testing conducted on the R2 in preparation for launch to the space station are similar to those we test on our car components during production," says Alan Taub, GM's VP of Global Research and Development. "The work done by General Motors and NASA engineers will also help us validate manufacturing technologies, improving the health and safety of workers at GM manufacturing plants around the world. Partnerships between organizations such as General Motors and NASA will ensure that space exploration and road safety as well as manufacturing can become even safer in the future.

For information on the NASA website

25 תגובות

  1. An interesting article and I was interested in giving a presentation on this topic at the college where I study. If anyone has more and more detailed information on the topic, I would love to hear it, thank you.

  2. To the fat Itzik, it's just a coincidence, they've been working on this robot for ten years and now there's finally a relevant version, what's more, it must be sent before the end of the shuttle flights, because after that every gram will be relevant.

  3. It seems as if this is NASA's solution to the fact that very soon they will not be sending humans into space for a long time
    And they will have to rely on the Russians, won't they?

  4. thanks for the answers.

    You asked Tam, why do we even need this robot on the space station? If it is not fully automatic and in any case one person from the staff has to control it, then what is the advantage of this robot over a person who can perform the same actions precisely and in a better way? After all, today it is already a matter of routine to go outside the spacecraft and carry out maintenance and renovation work, so what is the great advantage that instead of the astronaut carrying out the maintenance himself, he will remotely activate a robot to do it? Isn't this just unnecessary reluctance?

  5. Chest:
    You will continue to carry this stupid flag of rebellion alone as long as there are sane people here.
    By the way - have you already managed to deal with the physics question I gave you about high school material?

    By the way, do you think only fools manage to get money and geniuses like you can't?
    If this is the case - is the person who gives them money also stupid?
    If you are so smart - why aren't you rich?

  6. To 14

    with the budgets pouring in for this purpose,
    Only monkeys would not succeed...

    As a reminder: the twisted logic of the "scientists" still holds:

    A- The random evolution.
    In the Big Bang.
    C- that the space "curves" according to Einstein...

    I'm sorry to continue carrying the flag of rebellion alone...

  7. I'm sorry, but Zvi, you're wrong.
    These are not robots but lizard people. By Ehud Olmert.

  8. I'm surprised,

    Don't you understand that it is no accident that robots look like humans,
    The scientists in their twisted minds are trying to enslave humanity by creating human-like robots that will gradually (through their bionic abilities) screw themselves into positions of power in society. The ordinary people, who are not discerning, will not notice that they are in fact robots and thus the scientists will gradually take over society through the same robots that will be operated by them.

  9. The "twisted" logic of the scientists raises rockets to the moon.
    Hezi's "straight" logic picks up nonsense to put down.

  10. glacial,

    There is no problem converting equipment intended for use by humans to use by a robot,
    While operating parallel to the normal use, also for the use made by remote control.

    In such a case, the shape of the robot is of no importance, because it is a transmission of electronic signs
    (as in turning on TV channels, for example) from an electronic box.

    The construction of a Robonaut in human form for the purpose of functioning in space,
    It was a stupid thing to do.

    This is another example of the twisted logic of "scientists"...

  11. Hezi, you're right in principle, but remember that in environments designed for humans, it can make sense for a body that resembles a human to be effective - for example, all the devices in the station are designed for hands, separate devices will only complicate... You're right about non-human environments..

  12. The "human-like robot" complex.

    It is unnecessary and even harmful to think that a robot should outwardly resemble a human.

    Man was designed and created as a living, eating, breathing body and up to human tasks.
    The robot is "exempt" from basic human needs.

    Robots must be designed whose external form is completely different from the form of humans.

    What should determine the shape: the efficiency for the job that the robot has to perform.

    For example: it is possible that the shape of a snake with hands will be the preferred shape for treating space problems...

  13. Mogin, it's more like C3p0.
    Amir, I don't know specifically about this model, but as far as I know, the currently existing artificial intelligence technology is not developed enough to allow such a robot to "make decisions and act on its own". Nor should he be in situations that would require such a decision-making capacity: he will work as a laboratory assistant, that is, the human will give him instructions and he will carry out, according to plans programmed into him in advance.

  14. Yaniv:
    This is indeed an idea that Yehuda Sabdarmish (and many others) talked about.
    Some of those who talked about it also worked on its realization.
    Yehuda's article is one of the three articles linked to this article.

  15. "The tests of the leg confirmed the fact that the Robonaut will be able to climb on the outer side of a spacecraft with the help of handles, while placing its leg at a certain work site to make repairs or install parts. NASA's goal is to build robots that can "live" on the outer side of spacecraft and be prepared for routine maintenance or emergencies. Humans inside the spaceship will operate the Robonaut using wireless control"

    Tell me, isn't this actually the idea Yehuda Sabdarmish had at the time?

    (Yehuda, are you still here? :-))

  16. My father, it is not clear from the article, is this robot completely controlled by humans from some control position on the station or on Earth? Or does it have any autonomous features, and artificial intelligence that allows it to make decisions and act on its own? (to some extent at least)

  17. If he is a little rounder and knows how to whistle, it will be possible to call him R2D2 and not just R2

Leave a Reply

Email will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismat to prevent spam messages. Click here to learn how your response data is processed.