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Kibo The Robot To Visit The International Space Station In August

Kibo will take part in the world’s first conversation experiment held between a person and a robot in outer space.

| June 27, 2013 | Top News

AsianScientist (Jun. 27, 2013) - Air tickets have been booked for Japanese robot Kirobo's first visit to space.

Dentsu Inc. announced today that the robot astronaut, nicknamed Kibo, will board the Kounotori 4 cargo spacecraft that is scheduled to travel to the International Space Station (ISS) on August 4 this year.

Kibo is one of the two humanoid communication robots developed under the KIBO ROBOT PROJECT, a joint research project carried out in collaboration with the Research Center for Advanced Science and Technology, the University of Tokyo, ROBO GARAGE Co., Ltd. and Toyota Motor Corporation. The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) also provided support on the project.

RCAST and ROBO GARAGE worked on the development of the robot hardware and motion generation, Toyota was responsible for the voice recognition function used for the robot's intelligence, and Dentsu handled the creation of the conversation content as well as the management of the entire project.

Kibo and his inventors (Source: Kibo Research Project)
Kibo speaks Japanese and weighs 1 kg. He is 34 cm tall, 18 cm wide, and 15 cm in thickness. (Source: Kibo Research Project)

The H-IIB Launch Vehicle No. 4 carrying the H-II Transfer Vehicle (HTV4, also called Kounotori 4) will be launched around 4:48 a.m. JST on August 4, 2013 from the Tanegashima Space Center.

After disembarking at the ISS the robot astronaut will wait for the arrival of Commander Koichi Wakata in November or December. They will then take part in the world's first conversation experiment held between a person and a robot in outer space. This experiment will take place in the Kibo Japanese experiment module, which is part of the ISS.

Projected Timeline (subject to change)

August 4, 2013: Robot astronaut Kirobo leaves Japan for the ISS
Aug-Sep, 2013: Kirobo speaks for the first time in outer space
Nov–Dec 2013: Commander Wakata arrives at the ISS
December 2013: Commander Wakata and Kirobo have their first conversation
May–June 2014: Commander Wakata leaves the ISS
December 2014 or later: Kirobo returns to Earth


Source: Kibo Robot Project.
Disclaimer: This article does not necessarily reflect the views of AsianScientist or its staff.

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