Boeing Conducts First-Ever Astronaut Training in Virtual Reality Using Varjo Headsets

Photorealistic VR allows Starliner crew members to experience the most demanding and safety-critical scenarios in all phases of spaceflight

Helsinki, Finland, June 11, 2020 (Varjo PR) – Varjo, the leader in industrial-grade VR/XR headsets, today announced that its virtual reality headsets will be used by Boeing’s Starliner program to augment astronaut training, adding a new dimension to spaceflight preparations.

(more…)

Ready, Set, Go for COVID-conscious Astronaut Training

ESA astronaut Matthias Maurer trains Space Station robotic operations with ESA-developed virtual reality teaching system JIVE at the European Astronaut Centre (EAC) in Cologne, Germany. To ensure a COVID-19-conscious astronaut training, Matthias donned personal protective equipment. (Credit: ESA)

COLOGNE, Germany (ESA PR) — After nearly two months of confinement, it is not only school students who are progressively returning to class. ESA astronaut Matthias Maurer also returned to training at ESA’s European Astronaut Centre (EAC), starting with a slightly unusual robotics refresher.

At the end of April, Matthias donned personal protective equipment and maintained 2 m distance from instructors to participate in a training module that prepares astronauts to operate robotic devices like the Canadarm2 on the International Space Station.

(more…)

JAXA Collaborating with Private Businesses on Innovative Projects

A meal aboard a future station on the moon. More than 50 companies, universities, research institutions, and other organizations are participating in the Space Food X project to resolve issues related to the production and supply of food, both on Earth and in outer space. (Credit: JAXA)

TOKYO (JAXA PR) — The aim of the Business Development and Industrial Relations Department is to make space business a major industry in Japan, and to have projects and technologies related to space become something that is commonly found in our everyday life. The department conducts various efforts that would lead to expanding our usage of space and to help promote the space industry.

One of such efforts is the research and development program that was launched in May 2018–the space innovation partnership called J-SPARC. Private businesses with ideas on space business join forces with JAXA in bringing together human resources and funds to collaborate on creating new concepts, from the time of the planning stage. This is an open innovation program based on a system of partnership, where necessary technological developments and verifications are conducted with the aim of giving birth to new business opportunities.

(more…)