NASA‘s Robonaut 2 is one step closer to earning its keep on the International Space Station (ISS). Robonaut 2 is the assistant of International Space Station’s astronauts. The robot got its first taste of real work this month.
Robonaut 2 (R2) weighs 300 pound. It is capable of handling a wide range of EVA tools and interfaces. It fact, it is more compact, more dexterous and four times faster than its predecessor R1. It includes a deeper and wider range of sensing. Advanced technology spans the entire R2 system and includes: optimized overlapping dual arm dexterous workspace, series elastic joint technology, extended finger and thumb travel, miniaturized 6-axis load cells, redundant force sensing, ultra-high speed joint controllers, extreme neck travel, and high resolution stereoscopic cameras and IR systems. It can be remotely controlled by astronauts on the ISS or from a ground station.
This robotic assistant has been built and deployed on the stations to assist the workers with science experiments and capture alien life. Robonaut 2 was given a job – monitoring the on-board air velocity to ensure the humans on the ship didn’t choke to death only after when it became fitted with more heat-sinks to enable its delicate machinery to work for longer.
At present, the robot is able to monitor the air in the Destiny Laboratory. No doubt, this experiment was the first step in the robot relieving the crew of every dull task. As NASA is satisfied with its performance, it hopes that the future robots will take over the more repetitive or mundane tasks of space work.
Check out the video below where Robonaut 2 or R2 autonomously operating its taskboard on the International Space Station.