Footage of the spacecraft's interior shows that Fedor crawled in place and held a Russian flag in his right hand. Its narrow journey ends this weekend as the capsule joins the international space station where Fedor will join the six astronauts – two Russians, three Americans and one Italian – aboard the massive circuit lab.
Fedor, also known as the Skybot F-850, is scheduled to spend two weeks running tests on the station with Expedition 60 Commander Alexey Ovchinin before returning home the first week of September. The activities Fedor will carry out at the station are a closely held secret, at least for now, according to Russian media reports.
Perhaps Fedor's most important job already over: He has been launched into space aboard an upgraded version of Russia's storied Soyuz rocket to serve as a kind of test dock. For nearly a decade, Russia's Soyuz rocket and capsule system has been the only space hardware capable of flying people into orbit. And the Russian space agency Roscosmos is testing a new rocket design that will replace older computers and use an upgraded control system.
This is not the first time a robot has moved to the International Space Station.
19659007] For example, Robonaut 2, a boneless humanoid robot developed by NASA, flew to the space station in 2011. Robot tools are also common: A narrow arm, Canadarm2, attached to the top of the station can be used to clamp onto a nearby spaceship and help locking in place in a docking port.
Fedor is not a new face in the robot world. In 2017, a Russian official posted a video on his Facebook page showing a Fedor robot it was working with by the Russian Foundation for Advanced Research Projects. Fedor is shown using tools, driving a car and shooting a gun.