For long, human efforts have been directed towards constant expansion of human reach in universe. Every single equipment right from telescopes to satellites have been built with the same intent. A similar effort was recently made by a researchers’ team in California Institute of Technology along with NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory that designed a modular space telescope assembled by robots. Technically called as Robotically Assembled Modular Space Telescope (RAMST), it is bound to space and will be assembled by special robots in its orbit.
There are a number of encouraging reasons for building telescopes in space where their movement is not restricted by that of Mother Eath neither is it hindered by atmosphere. Telescopes assembled in space can have larger components along with an ability to click better images from distant targets. It increases the pressure over astronauts who held the assembling proficiency of space assembling of telescopes solely untill now.
The main problem here is of “Astronaut Fatigue” under which the astronaut can make fatal errors due to all work and no rest work motto. Needless to say, workplace accidents in Earth’s orbit are a very bad idea. The best solution is employment of robots for the most tedious tasks. A recently published articles in Journal of Astronomical Telescopes, Systems, and Instruments with the topic ‘Architecture For In-Space Robotic Assembly of a Modular Space Telescope clearly explains the framework of plan meant for building modular telescopes while it is still in orbit.
Harley Thronson, the senior scientist from Advanced Astrophysics Concepts from NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, explains, “The capability to assemble a modular space telescope has other potential applications. For example, astronomers using major ground-based telescopes are accustomed to many decades of operation, and the Hubble Space Telescope has demonstrated that this is possible in space if astronauts are available. A robotic system of assembly, upgrade, repair and resupply offers the possibility of very long useful lifetimes of space telescopes of all kinds.”
WHile the design is still scalable, it can easily be applied to numerous operations in space that will go way beyond the telescopes. It would need a little redesigning of present day technologies. Robotic workers can surely change the manner in which humans move around whenever they make a trip to space.
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