Categories: LaunchesSpace Station

Japanese Transfer Vehicle Launches Supplies, Robot to the Space Station

More supplies and a brand new talking robot for International Space Station. The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency’s (JAXA) HTV-4 Transfer Vehicle launched successfully from the Tanegashima Space Center in Japan, and will rendezvous in six days with the ISS. On board are 3.6 tons of dry cargo, water, experiments and spare parts to the International Space Station. The new robot, a .34 meter (13.4-inch) robot named Kirobo, is designed to be able to have a conversation with its astronaut crewmates and to study how robot-human interactions can help the astronauts in the space environment.

Unlike a Russian Progress vehicle which docks automatically, the HTV-4 will be captured by the Canadarm2 and berthed to the Harmony module. The cargo spacecraft will be commanded to fly within about 40 feet and then hold where Flight Engineer Karen Nyberg will operate the Canadarm2 during the approach and rendezvous of the Kountouri supply vehicle.

Nancy Atkinson

Nancy has been with Universe Today since 2004, and has published over 6,000 articles on space exploration, astronomy, science and technology. She is the author of two books: "Eight Years to the Moon: the History of the Apollo Missions," (2019) which shares the stories of 60 engineers and scientists who worked behind the scenes to make landing on the Moon possible; and "Incredible Stories from Space: A Behind-the-Scenes Look at the Missions Changing Our View of the Cosmos" (2016) tells the stories of those who work on NASA's robotic missions to explore the Solar System and beyond. Follow Nancy on Twitter at https://twitter.com/Nancy_A and and Instagram at and https://www.instagram.com/nancyatkinson_ut/

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