Meet Vyommitra! India's legless 'female' robot that will be sent to space

Daily Mail - Science & tech

The Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) is taking one giant leap for robot-kind. The space agency is sending the first half-humanoid along with an unmanned mission into space set for December. Named Vyommitra, the legless'female' robot speaks two languages, recognizes humans and answers questions like a living person. The purpose of the spacefaring machine is to conduct experiments before India launches its first manned mission to space in 2022. Scientists showed Vyommitra off a media event on Wednesday where she greeted spectators with'Hi, I'm Vyommitra the first prototype of half humanoid,' India Today reported.

Russia sends its first humanoid robot Fedor into space


Russia on Thursday launched an unmanned rocket carrying a life-size humanoid robot that will spend 10 days learning to assist astronauts on the International Space Station. Named Fedor, short for Final Experimental Demonstration Object Research, the robot is the first ever sent up by Russia. Fedor blasted off in a Soyuz MS-14 spacecraft at 6:38 am Moscow time (0338 GMT) from Russia's Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. The Soyuz is set to dock with the space station on Saturday and stay till September 7. Soyuz ships are normally manned on such trips, but on Thursday no humans are travelling in order to test a new emergency rescue system. Instead of cosmonauts, Fedor, also known as Skybot F850, was strapped into a specially adapted pilot's seat, with a small Russian flag in hand.

How Artificial Intelligence Helping In Space Exploration


Although astronauts are trained physically and psychologically to deal with extreme space situations, living in a confined space with no gravity could sometimes be stressful and could hamper their decision-making processes. This is where artificial intelligence is coming into the picture. Several years after the first moon landing, experts are now looking at emerging technologies to understand the space exploration a little better. With recent breakthroughs and discoveries, AI has been showing immense potential in space exploration, such as global navigation, earth observation, and communications to and fro. Historically, machine learning algorithms have been used in monitoring the spacecraft, autonomous navigation of the spacecraft, controlling systems, and intelligently detecting objects in the route.

A group of new astronauts join NASA under the Artemis program and could be the first to step on Mars

Daily Mail - Science & tech

It has been more than two years in the making, but 13 new astronauts have finally joined NASA under the mission that will bring the first female to the moon -and some may be the first humans to step on Mars. The candidates, who have been training since 2017, participated in the first public graduation ceremony for astronauts on Friday at the American space Agency's Johnson Space Center in Houston. The group includes six women and seven men, two of them were Canadian Space Agency (CSA) astronauts, and all were chosen from record-setting pool of more than 18,000 applicants. During the ceremony, each of the bright-eyed graduates were given a silver pin that symbolizes the Mercury 7 – NASA's first astronaut group that was selected in 1959. They will then be awarded a gold pin once they completed their first spaceflights.

How AI Can Help Astronauts Stay Healthy In Space


Mars pictured in natural color taken by the Rosetta spacecraft's Optical, Spectroscopic, and ... [ ] Infrared Remote Imaging System (OSIRIS). Humans have evolved over millions of years to live on Earth. Now humans are planning long duration space missions that will require them to live in space for extended periods of time. NASA plans to send humans to an asteroid by 2025 and to Mars in the 2030s. NASA's Journey to Mars, the longest manned space mission ever, will require humans to live in space for more than three years.

The Dull and Unpleasant 2020 Ethics of AI-enabled Science


In the 1997 movie Gattica, Ethan Hawke displayed the brute-force determination of the human spirit in an hypothetical, transitional to full CRISPR, gene-editing future that 23 years later we are now in, where all parents who wanted their children to succeed were forced to make a hard choice. To edit, to give you children the'best' of your genes, or let mother nature randomly recombine them to produce an'uncertain' outcome. Ethan succeeded in all mental and physical tasks to become an astronaut in that fictional world populated by supposed physically perfect geniuses, but, setting aside exactly how the Gattica scientists determined the criteria for'the best genes', the reality we are facing in 2020 is an interesting one that has some of the features of this movie. While the Chinese geneticist He Jiankui is now missing, he may historically be the person credited with making a Gattica future real. Every parent with the financial means may decide to travel to countries with less strict gene control laws and decide to do this, either on in utero children or on themselves.

2019 A Space Odyssey: CIMON 2 Space Station Robot Detects the Emotions of Astronauts.


CIMON (The Crew Interactive Mobile Companion 2) has been busy working with astronauts aboard the International Space Station. The robotic assistant is now using a tone analyzer, detecting emotions during the current voyage. CIMON made its debut on the ISS in November of this year, with's "During the experiment, CIMON successfully found and recognized Gerst's face, took photos and video, positioned itself autonomously within the Columbus module using its ultrasonic sensors, and issued instructions for Gerst to perform a student-designed experiment with crystals. Weighing about 5 kilograms (11 lbs. on Earth), the 3D-printed robot designed jointly by the German space agency DLR, Airbus, and IBM works similarly to Apple's virtual assistant Siri or Amazon's Alexa. "If CIMON is asked a question or addressed, the Watson AI firstly converts this audio signal into text, which is understood, or interpreted, by the AI," explained IBM project lead Matthias Biniok in the statement. "IBM Watson not only understands content in context, [but] it can also understand the intention behind it." There is a great video here, of Gerst conversing with CIMON, and it shows the complexity of this fantastic technology. Especially regarding the amount of relevant information that it can store and relay to astronauts, making their jobs easier. The Watson team at IBM computing only added the tone analyzer to the standard set of Watson capabilities this week. However, CIMON 2 was added as a seventh crew member on SpaceX Dragon during a resupply mission last week. In addition to updated software, the robot also got a hardware upgrade, with enhanced sensitivity on its microphones, and a more advanced sense of orientation. The German Aerospace Center and Airbus are the other crew members for this CIMON project. "IBM is using its tone analyzer technology to analyze how CIMON converses with the astronauts.

AI-powered space robot is back, now with emotional intelligence - IT-Online


Cimon, the world's first AI-powered astronaut assistant, has returned to the International Space Station--this time with a heightened ability to analyse human emotion. The objective, according to the researchers who fine-tuned the robot after its first successful mission aboard the spacecraft, is to transform Cimon from a scientific assistant into "an empathetic companion". As was the original Cimon, which spent 14 months in space, the new and improved Cimon-2 is a joint project by IBM, Airbus and the German Aerospace Center (DLR). Cimon-1 returned to Earth from the International Space Station (ISS) in August. Cimon-2 is heading back to the space station on a SpaceX rocket that launched 4 December from Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida.

Space assistant CIMON heads to ISS to become empathetic AI partner for astronauts ZDNet


The next iteration of a floating, artificially intelligent astronaut assistant is on its way to the International Space Station (ISS). Developed by Airbus in partnership with IBM and the German Aerospace Center, CIMON 2 is the latest model of the robot CIMON, short for Crew Interactive Mobile Companion. The first iteration, CIMON 1, weighed eleven pounds and served as a free-floating AI assistant for astronauts as they completed mission duties in space. The assistant was able to understand what the astronauts were saying in context, as well as the intention behind it. Like tabletop assistants, CIMON 1 could recognize speech and speak with a synthetic voice.

SpaceX Delivers 'Mighty Mice,' Pest-Killing Worms and a Smart Robot to International Space Station

TIME - Tech

SpaceX made an early holiday delivery to the International Space Station on Sunday, bringing muscle-bound "mighty mice," pest-killing worms and a smart, empathetic robot. The station commander, Italy's Luca Parmitano, used a large robot arm to grab onto the Dragon three days after its launch from Cape Canaveral. The two spacecraft soared 260 miles (420 kilometers) above the South Pacific at the time of capture. "Whenever we welcome a new vehicle on board, we take on board also a little bit of the soul of everybody that contributed to the project, so welcome on board," Parmitano told Mission Control. It marks the third visit for this recycled Dragon.