Japan recently announced that they’re considering sending a talking humanoid robot to the International Space Station in 2013. In addition to offering companionship, and being generally creepy — it’s suppose to monitor the astronauts while they sleep — it’ll communicate with Earth via twitter, where it’ll tweet images to its followers on the ground. Sadly, I don’t think the robot will posess super-human strength, or any form of self-awareness. After all, I doubt Japan has any cyberneticists capable of crafting the appropriate positronic components. Read more…
Posted by Michael Pinto on Dec 23, 2009 in Science
Shown above is footage of the Expedition 22 Soyuz docking at the International Space Station — what’s interesting about this mission is that it includes Soichi Noguchi of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency. Noguchi will be hanging out at the ISS for a six month stint in orbit and you can follow him on Twitter if you’d like to ask him some questions.
“New images of Shackleton taken by the Japanese lunar explorer satellite KAGUYA (SELENE) support the view that there likely aren’t any exposed water ice deposits in the crater. Junichi Haruyama of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency and his team analyzed the images and data. They suggest that temperatures in the crater are less than -297 degrees Fahrenheit (-183 degrees Celsius), certainly cold enough to hold ice. But the images reveal no conspicuous brightness that would indicate a patch of pure water ice.
This new analysis, detailed in the Oct. 24 issue of the journal Science, could mean that there is no water ice present at all in Shackleton crater, or that any ice that exists is mixed into the lunar dirt in low amounts, Haruyama and his team concluded.”