Russia’s humanoid robot has successfully traveled to the International Space Station… alone!

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One small step for man, one giant leap for…robots?

That’s right! Late Monday night, a humanoid robot traveling onboard a Russian spacecraft successfully made its way onto the International Space Station (ISS). This is the first time a Russian Soyuz spacecraft has visited the space station without a human inside.

The robot’s name is Fyodor, a nickname for Skybot F-850. Russia has been making different versions of similar robots for five years, but Fyodor is the first of its kind to travel into space.

Fyodor was launched inside of a Soyuz spacecraft from Kazakhstan on Wednesday, Aug. 21. Fyodor was not actually flying the spacecraft, though. A navigation system called Kurs was piloting the spacecraft, while Fyodor kept track of information like when it would begin to feel microgravity (think: super weak gravity).

Fyodor's journey is designed to help prepare astronauts for a similar trip in the Soyuz spacecraft.

After an initial failed launch on Saturday, Fyodor and his spacecraft successfully docked the ISS late last night! At 11:08 pm EST, the six-foot robot was brought into the space station along with food and supplies for the crew on board. Way to go, Fyodor!

Interested in more space stories like this one? Catch our “Wonders of the Night Sky” show playing every day in LSC’s Jennifer Chalsty Planetarium, the biggest planetarium in the Western Hemisphere. A portion is always set aside for LSC Space News Now stories.


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