Skip to comments.Dangling Dextre Digs out Docked Dragon Depot prior to Station Departure
Posted on 05/06/2014 9:39:19 PM PDT by BenLurkin
On Monday, May 5, the robotics team at NASA Mission Control Center at the Johnson Space Center in Houston carefully guided Canadas Dextre robotic handyman attached to the end of the 57-foot long Canadarm2 to basically dig out the final payload item housed in the unpressurized trunk section at the rear of the SpaceX Dragon cargo vessel docked to the ISS.
Dextre stands for Special Purpose Dexterous Manipulator and was contributed to the station by the Canadian Space Agency. It measures 12 feet tall and is outfitted with a pair of arms and an array of finely detailed tools to carry out intricate and complex tasks that would otherwise require spacewalking astronauts.
This unmanned Dragon delivered about 4600 pounds of cargo to the ISS including over 150 science experiments, a pair of hi tech legs for Robonaut 2, a high definition Earth observing imaging camera suite (HDEV), the laser optical communications experiment (OPALS), the VEGGIE lettuce growing experiment as well as essential gear, spare parts, crew provisions, food, clothing and supplies to the six person crews living and working aboard in low Earth orbit, under NASAs Commercial Resupply Services (CRS) contract.
OPALS uses laser light instead of radio waves to beam back precisely guided data packages to ground stations. The use of lasers should greatly increase the amount of information transmitted over the same period of time, says NASA.
The science experiments carried aboard Dragon are intended for research to be conducted by the crews of ISS Expeditions 39 and 40.
(Excerpt) Read more at universetoday.com ...
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