NASA to attach 'robot hotel' to International Space Station
INTERNATIONAL SPACE STATION — NASA plans to launch a storage space for robotic tools called the Robotic Tool Stowage, or RiTS, to the International Space Station.
In a news release, NASA explained that the robot hotel will be launched aboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket, during its 19th commercial resupply mission, on December 4.
Two robotic tools called Robotic External Leak Locators, or RELL, that are currently onboard the International Space Station, will be the first residents of the storage space.
These robotic tools are capable of detecting gases such as ammonia and are used to find leaks in the station.
NASA says the storage unit will protect the tools from space radiation, tiny meteoroids, or other high-speed objects traveling through space.
The Robotic Tool Stowage's thermal system will be able to maintain a constant temperature to help the space station's robotic equipment stay functional.
The location of the storage space will also make it easily accessible for the International Space Station's robotic arm called Dextre to get a hold of these tools.
Once the robot hotel makes its way to the space station, astronauts will perform a spacewalk to install the storage space to the station's exterior.
NASA says this type of technology could potentially be used in future space missions to the Moon, Mars, or beyond.