NASA: Robots critical to Endeavour's mission on space station
Two robots will work as a team and one robotic arm is set to 'walk' outside of ISS
Computerworld - The crew of the space shuttle Endeavour is getting ready to launch into what NASA is calling its most technical mission yet - one that will call on the power of three separate robots.
The highly complex mission will include five spacewalks, the use of three robotic arms, two working together and one that will actually "walk" across the outside of the space station.
Holly Ridings, lead space station flight director for the Endeavour mission, said it is one of the most technical undertaken by NASA. The mission goals couldn't be reached, she added, without the use of NASA robotics technology.
"The length of the mission, the five spacewalks, the robotics used almost every single day and 13 crew members makes it a big puzzle and all those pieces need to fit together correctly to get everything done," said Ridings, adding that NASA space missions will become increasingly dependent on robots.
"We have learned a lot about robotics and about working together with robot," she said. "Our spacewalkers are involved in activities while the robotic arms are looking at them and giving us camera views. The choreography of the different robotic arms is really complicated, and we've learned a lot about it and we do it well. Robotics is really one of the things that NASA has a lot of experience in and it's allowing us to do some wonderful things on the space station."
Endeavour is scheduled to dock with the space station early Monday morning. Then the real hard work begins on Tuesday when two astronauts will take the mission's first spacewalk with the help of two robotic arms.
Ridings explained that as the astronauts begin their work outside the space station, a robotic arm will lift a 4-ton piece of the Japanese complex out of the shuttle's payload bay. This piece, which has been dubbed a "front porch", will be permanently attached to the outside of the Japanese module. It is designed to hold its own payloads, as well as host experiments that need to be conducted in outer space.
Once the station's robotic appendage called the big arm has extracted the porch from the shuttle, it will be handed off to the space shuttle's own robotic arm. While the shuttle's arm holds the porch, the station's arm will move itself about 50 feet down the length of the space station by basically moving much like a child's Slinky toy.
- 15 Non-Certified IT Skills Growing in Demand
- How 19 Tech Titans Target Healthcare
- Twitter Suffering From Growing Pains (and Facebook Comparisons)
- Agile Comes to Data Integration
- Slideshow: 7 security mistakes people make with their mobile device
- iOS vs. Android: Which is more secure?
- 11 sure signs you've been hacked
If you use ‘password,’ one the worst passwords, as your password, fail to keep antivirus protection updated and don’t bother to deploy security patches to close critical vulnerabilities, then maybe you should consider working for the cybersecurity-clueless federal government; you’d fit right in, according to Senator Tom Coburn's cybersecurity and critical infrastructure report.
- IT Certification Study Tips
- Register for this Computerworld Insider Study Tip guide and gain access to hundreds of premium content articles, cheat sheets, product reviews and more.
- Changing the Way Government Works: Four Technology Trends that Drive Down Costs and Increase Productivity
- This paper discusses four technology-based approaches to improving processes and increasing
productivity while driving down department and agency costs.
- Pay-as-you-Grow Data Protection: IBM Tivoli's Full-featured Data Protection Suite for Small to Medium Businesses
- IBM Tivoli Storage Manager Suite for Unified Recovery gives small and medium businesses the opportunity to start out with only the individual solutions...
- Streamline Data Protection with IBM Tivoli Storage Manager Operations Center
- IBM Tivoli Storage Manager (TSM) has been an industry-standard data protection solution for two decades. But, where most competitors focus exclusively on Backup...
- Simplify and Consolidate Data Protection for Better Business Results
- Learn about IBM® Tivoli® Storage Manager Operations Center, which provides advanced visualization, built-in analytics and integrated workflow automation features that leapfrog traditional backup...
- HP HAVEn: See the big picture in Big Data
- HP HAVEn is the industry's first comprehensive, scalable, open, and secure platform for Big Data. Enterprises are drowning in a sea of data... All Government IT White Papers
- Meg Whitman presents Unlocking IT with Big Data During this Web Event you will hear Meg Whitman, President and CEO, HP discuss HAVEn - the #1 Big Data platform, as well...
- The New Way to Work Knowledge Vault This Knowledge Vault focuses on how, in today's increasingly virtual world, it's more important than ever to engage deeply with employees, suppliers, partners,...
- Getting Ready for BlackBerry Enterprise Service 10.2 Find out how BlackBerry® Enterprise Service 10 helps organizations address the full spectrum of EMM challenges, while balancing the needs of both the...
- Containerization Options: How to Choose the Best DLP Solution for Your Organization This webcast outlines a framework for making the right choice when it comes to containerization approaches, along with the pros and cons of...
- Mobile Apps and Devices Slash Customer Cycle Time Consolidated Engineering Laboratories' field employees used to collect data on triplicate forms that were sometimes hard to read and difficult to manage. After...
- All Government IT Webcasts