Intelligent Flying Assistant Drone to Help ISS Astronauts

Airbus and IBM are taking the concept of a smart assistant for astronaut crew into space in the form of a spherical free-flying AI drone. Remember intelligent space computer Holly from English science fiction comedy series “Red Dwarf”? For those of you that don’t, crew members Lister could talk to her via a human head interface in a computer screen, requesting information and advice.

CIMON (short for Crew Interactive MObile Companion, or Interactive Mobile Companion for the crew), goes one step further with the ability to float around the International Space Station providing assistance where needed to crew. On behalf of the space agency DLR, geophysicist Alexander Gerst will test the demonstration technology, which is the size of a medicine ball and around 5 kg in weight, during the Horizons mission of the European Space Agency that will be held at the ISS between June and October 2018.

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