NASA Ames to Unleash New Robots on Space Station

#1
They come from NASA Ames in Mountain View (not far from my home). I'm very fond of NASA Ames, lots of cool things there, such as NASA's exobiology unit.  

There are going to be three of these robots initially. They have 'bee' names: Honey, Bumble and Queen. They are cubical, designed for weightlessness and are propelled by fans. They will come equipped with a single arm each and can be fitted with specialized appendages for specific tasks. They are designed to accept lots of software upgrades, so that the engineers can continually tinker with them. They can be commanded by astronauts on the space station, mission control in Houston, or can operate autonomously. There will be a wall-charger installed on the wall of the space station and the robots can find it and plug themselves in whenever they are hungry. (Diagram from NASA.)


[Image: astrobee_lebeled.png]


See them in action in a NASA video here:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_conti...8WYaaGf2f8
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#2
(Apr 25, 2019 05:08 AM)Yazata Wrote: . . . There are going to be three of these robots initially. [...] They will come equipped with a single arm each and can be fitted with specialized appendages for specific tasks. They are designed to accept lots of software upgrades, so that the engineers can continually tinker with them. They can be commanded by astronauts on the space station, mission control in Houston, or can operate autonomously...


I noticed in the 2nd season of "Star Trek: Discovery" that Starfleet finally has nanobots doing damage repairs on the outside of ships. But I don't expect that the franchise will ever get futurologically realistic enough to acknowledge that human crews themselves could become significantly or altogether defunct, especially with regard to all that button pushing. Would kind of cut down on the drama (a lot), as well as promote both physical and psychological indolence -- a handful of childlike or spoiled Eloi-like humans and alien colleagues leisurely living it up on board while the robots and AI systems battle the baddies. (Granting that even the latter would still have a point or purpose for enduring.)
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#3
The Bees have arrived at the Space Station. Here's a NASA photo of Astroannimal in the relatively roomy Japanese module checking out the one named Bumble.

https://www.nasa.gov/image-feature/ames/...-checks-in


[Image: iss059e038084.jpg]


Looking at the photo, one of the ever-present black HP laptops is visible. (Actually more than one. There's another one almost closed above Bumble, and a third one on the right side wall.) Astroannimal probably has the one she's using connected to Bumble's USB port so that the computer can run a set-up and configuration routine. And they seem to have added some new footholds at workstations that you slip your feet into like sandals and aren't just depending on those blue toe-bars. Note what look like sandals on the toe-bar below. They create a nice Japanese touch for the Japanese module!
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