Space robot goes operational at ISS
Canadian droid puts astro-vet out of work
Dextre, the mighty tonne-and-a-half space robot intended for repair and servicing tasks at the International Space Station (ISS), is now fully operational, according to reports. The 12-foot-tall mechanical maintenance man, a product of cutting-edge Canadian space robotics tech, has been fully assembled and is ready for work.
What Canada is renowned for.
The assembly was led by spacesuited extra-vehicular activity expert (and fully-qualified veterinarian) Dr Richard Linnehan, assisted by space-rookie Robert Behnken. Linnehan reportedly described the view during the operation of mighty Mother Earth in all her glory, rolling majestically beneath the gleaming white spaceships against the infinite starry void, as "pretty awesome".
Now that Dextre is up and running, Linnehan may have to return to being a vet. It seems that the Canadian droid will pretty much eliminate the need for spacewalking astronauts, as it can carry out almost any task a human can. Typical jobs, according to NASA, might include changing batteries or other parts in modules and "payloads" attached to the space station. The mechanoid is apparently designed for "high precision and a gentle touch", though it can also heave the likes of two-hundred-pound power units about with ease.
Dextre will normally move about the exterior of the station on the end of the enormous articulated "Canadarm2" gantry, also a Canadian product. If necessary the machine can "ride independently" on its mobile base system. NASA says that Canada was the natural choice to provide all this machinery, as America's northern neighbour is "renowned for its expertise in space robotics".
Dextre, Canadarm2 and the Mobile Base can all be operated by groundside controllers, thus freeing up space station astronauts to carry out other tasks inside. The main purpose of the ISS was to carry out human space operations, so it does seem curious in some ways that in fact - even when there are astronauts right there to hand - it still turns out to be safer and more efficient to use robots controlled from Earth. ®
Your "US" politicians were in fact Indiana state legislators (not federal - that is, US - politicoes). And they didn't try to say pi was 3 either - it was one of several values according to the bill introduced, none of them actually 3 as I recall. The bill was rejected anyway.
A little knowledge, eh? If the shoe fits ...
Anyway, if your judgement of units is based on how many Nobel physics prizes have been dished out by those defining, the slug is without recognition. And indeed it never was much used - Britain went to kgs, and Americans tended to use pounds-mass (ultimately referring to grams) - seeing the slug as a little-used "English" unit. Even though the English weren't using it at all.
If NASA want to talk about an orbital robot heaving pounds of stuff about rather than kilos, they can and they will, and it will make perfect sense to anyone normal.
now all we need
is Mandark up there with a bigger arm ....
When its time to decomission them : just send up DeeDee ...
'Oooo. What does this button do'
Mines the one with the Mayor Glory emblem on the back and the wrench in the pocket..
"Actually the US pound was defined in grams by Congress,"
Take care, U.S. politicians have rarely been awarded Nobel physics prizes. You do know that they tried to redefine pi to be 3.0? They knew it would make computations so much easier if it were a rational number.
A little knowledge is a dangerous thing...