Alexander Gerst, a stint commander in the European International Space Station is making efforts to set up shops on Mars. Gerst works with Justin, a humanoid robot being trained to carry out commands that could eventually help in realising this dream. Earlier, this week Gerst conducted a variety of tasks with Justin, directing the robot from space using a tablet.
Justin works completely alone with Gerst without any contact with the ground crew. This is the third experiment the European Space Station has carried out.
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Gerst has a tablet up there and on which he has a user interface that helps him in directing the robot.
“This interface has been kept very general. There are only very broad directives. He can say, for example, ‘Justin, Justin, drive to this place’ and then Justin has to go there and orient himself. Justin would then put the plug in the solar panel to get diagnostics and the robot would have to carry out all these things itself,” Gerst said.
According to reports, Justin successfully managed to replace a smoking solar battery in a station module.
“The aim of the robot is to allow a realistic potential exploration of Mars in preparation for the possible introduction of man to the planet” according to the European Aerospace Centre.
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The technology by Gerst can also help in solving problems that are dangerous for humans to handle.
Earlier, in May this year the German Aerospace Centre introduced project - smile that uses humanoid robots to assist people working in the care sector to help people with physical disabilities.