Space & Astronomy
Russia's gun-toting robot flies to the ISS
By T.K. Randall
August 23, 2019 · 14 comments
Are robots the key to sustainable space exploration ? Image Credit: Roscosmos
The humanoid contraption was the only passenger aboard a Soyuz capsule that launched on Wednesday.
Images from the inside of the spacecraft, which soared into the heavens after a successful launch from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, showed the robot clutching a small Russian flag as it sat proudly in the commander's seat.
Known as Skybot F-850 and nicknamed 'Fyodor', the robot will spent roughly two weeks aboard the International Space Station so that its creators can see how it gets on in zero-gravity.
It is the latest in a series of Russian-built FEDOR robots that can be designed to perform a whole range of tasks from driving cars to operating a welding torch and everything in-between.
Perhaps the most notorious example of the robots' versatility is a video from 2017 showing one of them wielding two automatic pistols and shooting at targets on a gun range.
The stunt even prompted Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin to write - "We are not creating a Terminator, but artificial intelligence that will be of great practical significance in various fields."
Fortunately though, Fryodor won't be bringing any weapons aboard the space station.
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