'Floating Brain' Headed to ISS on SpaceX Cargo Run
01 Juillet, 2018, 15:00 | Auteur: Therese Cote
Live coverage of the rendezvous and capture will air on NASA Television and the agency's website beginning at 2:30 a.m. PDT (5:30 a.m. EDT) Monday, July 2. This means that, while its functionality may be limited at first, its feature set could expand dynamically over time depending on the needs of ISS crew members.
Called CIMON, or Crew Interactive MObile companioN, the floating orb uses artificial intelligence to listen for commands and then display experiment or fix instructions. Alexander Gerst, a German astronaut now aboard the ISS, helped design CIMON's screen prompts and vocal controls.
Hovering at the astronauts' eye level, its front camera can detect if the person in front of it is indeed Gerst, or someone else.
As intriguing as identical space siblings and turbo-charged space coffee may be, it's the German robot - named Cimon, pronounced Simon, after a genius doctor in science fiction's "Captain Future" - that's stealing the show.
For more than 17 years, humans have lived and worked continuously aboard the International Space Station, advancing scientific knowledge and demonstrating new technologies, making research breakthroughs not possible on Earth that will enable long-duration human and robotic exploration into deep space.
The robot should be able to guide Gerst through various science procedures, showing videos or pictures as needed. Gerst can also ask CIMON questions about those experiments on which he will work.
Once toggled to "offline", Gerst can be sure nothing he is saying is streamed down to the IBM server on Earth.
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