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‘Mighty Mice’ Pest-Killing Worms and A Smart, Empathetic Robot in The Space Station

SpaceX made an early vacation supply to the International Space Station on Sunday, dropping off super muscular “mighty mice,” pest-killing worms, and a wise, empathetic robotic.

Italy’s Luca Parmitano, the station commander, used a big robotic arm to grab onto the Dragon three days after it is launch from Cape Canaveral. The two spacecraft soared 260 miles (420 kilometers) above the South Pacific at the time of capture.

“Every time we welcome a brand new vehicle on board, we take on board additionally a little bit of the soul of everyone that contributed to the undertaking, so welcome on board,” Parmitano informed Mission Control.

The capsule holds three tons (2,720 kilograms) of providers, together with forty mice for a bone and muscle experiment. 8 of them are genetically engineered with twice the normal muscle mass—and so are thought of “mighty mice.”‘ There are also 120,000 roundworms or nematodes of a helpful selection, which are a part of an agricultural examine aimed toward controlling pests.

The capsule additionally has a big, round robotic head with artificial intelligence and the power to sense astronauts’ emotions. Named Cimon, it is an improved model of what flew up last year to be examined as an astronaut’s helper.

NASA has tucked some Christmas presents within the shipment for the station’s six-particular person crew, as effectively.

It is SpaceX’s 19th delivery to the orbiting outpost for NASA over the previous seven years. The astronauts have one other delivery coming Monday—this one launched by Russia from Kazakhstan on Friday.

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