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Robotics Space NASA United States Science Technology

The Right Robotic Stuff 53

An anonymous reader writes "When Tom Wolfe wrote about NASA's first Mercury astronauts in The Right Stuff, he wanted to know what combination of guts, skill, and derring-do inspired these men to 'sit up on top of an enormous Roman candle and wait for someone to light the fuse.' About 50 years after the Mercury astronauts' heyday, a new kind of space pioneer is preparing for the trip to the International Space Station. Robonaut 2, NASA's first robot astronaut, will catch a ride with the space shuttle this week, and will soon take up residence at the space station. So, what does it take to become the first robotic astronaut? Discover Magazine talked to one of the project engineers, and found out about R2's qualifications and training regimen. It's pretty entertaining, and comes with photos and video."
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The Right Robotic Stuff

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  • Wally Schirra (Score:3, Informative)

    by ShakaUVM ( 157947 ) on Monday November 01, 2010 @08:17PM (#34096740) Homepage Journal

    Wally Schirra was pretty critical of The Right Stuff, saying it portrayed some of the astronauts as nothing more than overgrown man children.

    I met him once, at the Miramar Air Show, back in the 80s. My grandmother used to work for NASA, so we got a signed copy of Schirra's Space around here somewhere... but anyhow, the point is, you probably shouldn't (just) rely on The Right Stuff to capture an accurate portrayal of the psychological makeup of the early astronauts, as people that were actually there disagreed pretty severely with its facts.

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