Here is the robot named 'Bumble' that will take care of the International Space Station (ISS) in the near future. NASA has completed the first hardware test of this robot in space.
Bumble is one of three Astrobee robots that will research automated caretaking aboard the ISS. Bumble, and another robot named Honey were launched to the space station on April 17 aboard Northrop Grumman's eleventh commercial resupply services mission from NASA's Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia.
Astrobee is a free-flying robot system that will provide a research platform for the orbiting laboratory. The system includes three robots as well as a docking station for recharging.
“Astrobee, NASA’s new free-flying robotic system, will help astronauts reduce time they spend on routine duties, leaving them to focus more on the things that only humans can do. Working autonomously or via remote control by astronauts, flight controllers or researchers on the ground, the robots are designed to complete tasks such as taking inventory, documenting experiments conducted by astronauts with their built-in cameras or working together to move cargo throughout the station. In addition, the system serves as a research platform that can be outfitted and programmed to carry out experiments in microgravity - helping us to learn more about how robotics can benefit astronauts in space”, said NASA in its Website.
"NASA astronaut Anne McClain performs the first series of tests of an Astrobee robot, Bumble, during a hardware checkout. To her right is the docking station that was installed in the Kibo module on the International Space Station on Feb. 15”, added NASA.
When needed the robots will be able to return to their docking station on their own and recharge their battery power, the US space agency said in a statement.
Robots will play a significant part in the agency's mission to return to the Moon as well as other deep space missions.
(Image Courtesy: NASA)