Introducing CIMON, a floating, basketball-sized robot that will serve as a companion and assistant to crew members aboard the International Space Station. Infused with artificial intelligence, the floating bot is reminiscent of HAL from 2001: A Space Odyssey, but far less evil. We hope.
Before they’re strapped onto rockets for a mission to Mars, ion engines, like NASA’s VASIMR project need to be tested–here at the STG-ET chamber at the German Aerospace Agency (DLR), one of the most advanced vacuum chambers on the planet.
It looks like the Europervs got a bad case of penis envy: They are now working on a suborbital plane–in the image–similar to the SpaceShipTwo and a hypersonic passenger plane called SpaceLiner.