CIMON (Crew Interactive Mobile Companion), a robotic astronaut is on-board with other crew members at SpaceX’s most recent resupply launch. This artificial intelligence assistant designed by Airbus and IBM is only the size of a medicine ball and weighs just 11 pounds! It is designed to assist the European Space Agency’s astronauts in everyday task aboard the ISS.
In a press release that announced CIMON’s arrival, Airbus said that CIMON, having a friendly voice and face is built with emotional intelligence. It will be able to detect crew members’ moods and act accordingly to make them feel that it is a part of the crew family. It has been incorporated with IBM’s Watson AI technology which enables it to listen, understand, and talk. CIMON is trained alongside German astronaut Alexander Gerst and it recognizes Gerst’s face and voice. It is believed that it will help the geophysicist and volcanologist to study crystals on the space station. Till Eisenberg, CIMON project lead at AIRBUS told Space.com that CIMON can guide the crew, and help them by reading instructions, showing text or video on the screen, and answering questions.
CIMON, an ‘intelligent camera’ and a ‘mastermind’ will be of a great help in future to observe crew members on longer missions. CIMON is first of its kind and will hopefully become a ‘genius’ colleague on board!