When we last told you about Dextre, he was about to be launched to the ISS via Endeavor. It seems that all did not go well with the bot, who decided to sleep in a bit longer. It turns out that a cable design flaw wouldn’t allow power to turn him on. The astronauts finally got him up and running, then attached his hands to his arms and his arms to his torso. No one is sure yet about the reason for the dilemma since it wasn’t apparent in pre-flight testing, but NASA promises a thorough investigation.
Read More | USA Today
When Endeavor takes off this week, it will have more than a paper airplane and space boomerangs for the astronauts to play with. Dextre (for dexterous) will have to be built once he arrives on the ISS, for he is 12 feet tall with multi-jointed 11 foot arms. Costing about $200 million, he is tele-operated and will attend to some of the station repair jobs. Apparently the Canadian bot has a sensitive touch and precise control even without legs.
Read More | CSA
Sometimes we wonder about too much time on scientists’ hands when we hear that some of them from the University of Tokyo have been working in conjunction with the Origami Airplane Association to create a paper airplane that can survive a flight from the ISS into Earth’s atmosphere. Having begun testing a 3.1-inch prototype in a wind tunnel, the glider, which is shaped like the Space Shuttle, has been exposed to wind speeds of Mach 7 (5,300 mph.)
Although no launch date has been set, Professor Sinji Suzuki says he hopes a message of peace will be written on it before launch, since they don’t know exactly where it will land. We think that should be if, considering it may burn up before it reaches home.
Read More | Pink Tentacle