International Space Station: Russia sends first humanoid 'Fedor' robot into space

Rodiano Bonacci
Agosto 22, 2019

The new booster rocket is expected to replace the Soyuz-FG rocket next year.

In a groundbreaking, historic test flight, the Soyuz-2.1a carrier rocket along with the MS-14 spacecraft blasted off from the Baikonur space center in Kazakhstan on Thursday headed to the International Space Station (ISS), with a Russian humanoid robot, known as Fedor, as its sole passenger on board. Such robots will eventually carry out risky operations such as space walks, Bloshenko told the state news agency RIA Novosti.

Named Fedor, for Final Experimental Demonstration Object Research with identification number Skybot F850, the robot is the first-ever sent up by Russian Federation.

The robot was heard saying "let's go, let's go" during launch, repeating the famous phrase by pioneering cosmonaut Yury Gagarin.

Fedor stands some one metre and 80 centimetres tall (5ft 11 inches) and weighs 160 kilograms.

The robot, which was in the commander's seat, holding a small Russian flag in its right hand, sent out a tweet shortly after the orbiting saying that the first part of onboard tests went as planned. Within the station, it's going to trial these handbook abilities in very low gravity. He will try to use screwdrivers, spanners and various electrical connectors - everything that cosmonauts use in their routine work, "Roscosmos executive director in charge of science, Alexander Bloshenko said in an interview with Russia's Rossiiskaya Gazeta government daily, TASS reported".

The space robot's Twitter account announced after reaching orbit: "The first stage of in-flight experiments went according to the flight plan".

It is hoped that Fedor will eventually carry out more risky tasks such as spacewalks.

Such robots will finally perform harmful operations equivalent to house walks, Bloshenko informed RIA Novosti state information company. We will achieve the results and create AI for robots but only in the future and if this task is undertaken not only by us, but also by many teams across Russian Federation.

In 2011, NASA sent up Robonaut 2, a humanoid robot developed with General Motors and a similar aim of working in high-risk environments.

Developed with Toyota, Kirobo was capable of holding conversations in Japanese.

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