Space station astronauts have a new floating AI robot companion

Astronauts on board the International Space Station have switched on CIMON (Crew Interactive Mobile CompanioN), a new AI companion robot built by German space agency DLR, Airbus, and IBM. CIMON is an interface for IBM's WATSON AI system. From Space.com:

Marco Trovatello, a spokesman of the European Space Agency's Astronaut Centre in Cologne, Germany, told Space.com that CIMON could respond within a couple of seconds after a question was asked, no slower than in ground-based tests.

A data link connects CIMON with the Columbus control center in Germany; from there, the signal travels first to the Biotechnology Space Support Center at the Lucerne University in Switzerland, where CIMON's control team is based. Then, the connection is made over the internet to the IBM Cloud in Frankfurt, Germany, Bernd Rattenbacher, the team leader at the ground control centre at Lucerne University, said in the statement...

"CIMON is a technology demonstration of what a future AI-based assistant on the International Space Station or on a future, longer-term exploration mission would look like," Trovatello said. "In the future, an astronaut could ask CIMON to show a procedure for a certain experiment, and CIMON would do that."

Read the rest

Watch the first 8k video from the International Space Station

NASA and ESA (European Space Agency) released the first 8k ultra high definition (UHD) video of life and science inside the International Space Station. From NASA:

The Helium 8K camera by RED, a digital cinema company, is capable of shooting at resolutions ranging from conventional HDTV up to 8K, specifically 8192 x 4320 pixels. By comparison, the average HD consumer television displays up to 1920 x 1080 pixels of resolution, and digital cinemas typically project in resolutions of 2K to 4K....

Delivered to the station in April aboard the 14th SpaceX cargo resupply mission through a Space Act Agreement between NASA and RED, this camera’s ability to record twice the pixels and at resolutions four times higher than the 4K camera brings science in orbit into the homes, laboratories and classrooms of everyone on Earth.

“We’re excited to embrace new technology that improves our ability to engage our audiences in space station research,” said David Brady, assistant program scientist for the International Space Station Program Science Office at Johnson. “Each improvement in imagery fidelity brings that person on Earth closer to the in-space experience, allowing them to see what human spaceflight is doing to improve their life, as well as enable humanity to explore the universe.”

Read the rest

Astronauts watching Star Wars on the ISS

The crew of the International Space Station watch Star Wars: The Last Jedi in this photograph posted to Twitter by astronaut Mark. T. Vande Hei: "Space Station movie night, complete with “bungee cord chairs”, drink bags, and a science fiction flick!" Read the rest

Video of the International Space Station passing in front of the solar eclipse

SmarterEveryDay's Destin Sandlin captured this astonishing video of the International Space Station transiting Monday's solar eclipse. Fast forward to 3:50 for the magical moment. And in case you missed it, below is NASA's still photo of the ISS transiting the sun at five miles per second.

Read the rest

Astronaut says flight to Space Station felt like “burrito of awesomeness smothered in awesome sauce“

"It’s so beautiful," U.S. astronaut Jack Fischer described today's trip to the ISS to his wife. The experience, he said, was "a burrito of awesomeness smothered in awesome sauce." Read the rest

Watch how NASA trains astronauts with VR

NASA has always been an early adopter of technology like virtual and augmented reality for training. Here's a cool glimpse into how they train future ISS and landing party astronauts. Read the rest

Float through the space station in this fisheye POV

Crank it to 4K and go full-screen to feel as if you're floating through the International Space Station. It's cool to think about how quaint this technology will look someday, like a wooden sailing ship, but for now, it's still mind-blowingly cool. Read the rest

ISS captures three hurricanes in time-lapse video, two in Pacific and one in Atlantic

Cameras on the International Space Station captured this footage of three major hurricanes on Earth on August 30. Two of these storms are in the Pacific Ocean, and one is in the Atlantic Ocean. Read the rest

SpaceX Dragon Splashes Down with Crucial NASA Research Samples

Another successful SpaceX mission to resupply the ISS ended today with a splashdown in the Pacific, southwest of Mexico's Baja Peninsula. Here's an update from NASA. Read the rest

'NASA: On the Edge of Forever' explores links between Star Trek and the ISS

NASA released today the first of three videos that will highlight Star Trek and NASA tie-ins, to coincide with the release of Star Trek Beyond and Star Trek’s 50th Anniversary. Read the rest

Watch it live, 5:30am ET: Cygnus Supply Craft Rendezvous With Space Station

“A new shipment of science, spacewalk gear and crew supplies is on its way to the International Space Station,” NASA says. Astronauts on the International Space Station will grapple an arriving Cygnus supply spacecraft this morning, with coverage starting at 5:30 a.m. EDT (0930 GMT). Read the rest

NASA astronaut Scott Kelly safely returns to Earth after year-long mission in space

NASA reports that astronaut and Expedition 46 Commander Scott Kelly and his Russian counterpart Mikhail Kornienko have returned to Earth Tuesday night, after a historic 340-day mission aboard the International Space Station. The space travelers touched down in Kazakhstan at 11:26 p.m. EST (10:26 a.m. March 2 Kazakhstan time). Read the rest

Astronaut/musician Chris Hadfield's album recorded in space

Chris Hadfield, astronaut, author, and musician, will release the first album partially recorded in space. Read the rest

Greens grown in space are now on Space Station astronaut menu

Crew members on Expedition 44, including NASA's one-year astronaut Scott Kelly, harvested some "Outredgeous" red romaine lettuce Monday, Aug. 10, from the Veggie plant growth system on the nation’s orbiting laboratory.

Watching a sphere of water bubble in space in 4K resolution: Yup, pretty cool

The reaction of putting an effervescent antacid tablet into water was filmed with the Red Epic Dragon Camera, on board the ISS.

ISS crew forced to take shelter from hazardous space junk. Again.

All ISS systems continued to operate normally while the Russian cosmonauts and NASA astronaut sheltered.

Epic photo of the International Space Station passing in front of the moon

A stunning capture of the ISS in front of Earth's moon, by Dylan O'Donnell.

More posts