A preliminary robot with a cartoon face known as CIMON (crew interactive mobile companion), has been sent to the International Space Station (ISS), on board a spaceX Falcon 9 rocket.
This robot which weighs 5kg is an Al assistant for astronauts.
CIMON was designed to find out whether robots could work together with astronauts.
It was designed by Airbus and IBM for the German national space agency, DLR.
With its English accent, CIMON will instruct astronauts to aid them carry out scientific experiments.
It can answer verbal questions, and also help in the use of artificial intelligence in assisting space flights.
CIMON will be working with Alexander Gerst, a German astronaut.
For this reason, this device has been equipped with microphones and cameras that will enable it to recognize Alexander easier.
Also, CIMON has an online button which can stop Alexander from having audio streamed to servers on earth during moments of privacy.
Speaking to Reuters, IBM engineer Matthias Biniok said, their main mission is to support the astronauts with their daily tasks in order to save time.
According to him, time is the most valuable and expensive asset on the ISS.
The rocket which took off from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida is expected to return to Earth on December 13th.