NASA's First Robotic Crew Member To Tweet From Space Station

Aug 02, 2010
The Robonaut 2.

(PhysOrg.com) -- NASA's Robonaut 2 has no voice but is ready to tell you its story -- in 140 characters or less. The prototype robot will travel to space this fall to give NASA a deeper understanding of human-robotic interaction.

Called R2, the robot has started sending updates about its upcoming mission from its new Twitter account, @AstroRobonaut. With the help of its supporting team, R2 will document its preparations for launch and, eventually, its work aboard the .

"Hello World! My name is Robonaut 2 -- R2 for short," R2 and the team tweeted this week. "Follow my adventures here as I prepare for space!"

Follow R2's updates on Twitter at: www.twitter.com/AstroRobonaut

Reporters are invited to NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston at 1 p.m. CDT on Aug. 4 to see demonstrations of R2 in action. They can speak with members of the STS-133 space shuttle crew, who will deliver the robot to the station, and engineers who created R2. Interested news media representatives should e-mail Brandi Dean at brandi.k.dean@nasa.gov by noon on Aug. 3.

The public will get the first chance to interview the robot when R2 and its team answer questions submitted via Twitter at 10 a.m. on Aug. 4. followers can submit their questions to R2 in real time by including the hashtag #4R2 in their questions tweeted to @AstroRobonaut.

R2 will be shipped next month from Johnson, where it was created, to NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida for final testing and packing. It will launch aboard as part of the STS-133 mission, targeted to lift off in November.

Robonaut 2 was created through a joint project between NASA and General Motors that began in 2007. R2 originally was intended to be an Earth-bound prototype, but engineers wanted to see how it fared in so the robot is being sent to space in Discovery's cargo bay.

R2 is already the most advanced dexterous humanoid robot in existence. Once in space, it will become the first humanoid robot to reach orbit and the first American-built robot at the space station. Over time, as its creators learn more about operating R2 in space, upgrades and modifications could be made that would allow the robot to assist astronauts inside and outside of the station with routine tasks or those too dangerous for humans.

Explore further: Student to live in simulated space habitat

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Astronauts 'tweet' from space

May 12, 2009

Astronauts are giving a behind the scenes look at the space shuttle Atlantis's high-risk mission to service the Hubble telescope, thanks to micro-blogging sensation Twitter.

Recommended for you

Europe sat-nav launch glitch linked to frozen pipe

5 hours ago

A frozen fuel pipe in the upper stage of a Soyuz launcher likely caused the failure last month to place two European navigation satellites in orbit, a source close to the inquiry said Wednesday.

Cyanide ice in Titan's atmosphere

7 hours ago

Gigantic polar clouds of hydrogen cyanide roughly four times the area of the UK are part of the impressive atmospheric diversity of Titan, the largest moon of Saturn, a new study led by Leiden Observatory, ...

Video: Alleged meteor caught on Russian dash cam (again)

11 hours ago

Thanks to the ubiquity of dashboard-mounted video cameras in Russia yet another bright object has been spotted lighting up the sky over Siberia, this time a "meteor-like object" seen on the evening of Saturday, Sept. 27.

User comments : 0