Flying brain blasts off on cargo ship toward space station

Enlarge  SpaceX launches NASA's TESS mission in April 2018. That booster may fly again

Enlarge SpaceX launches NASA's TESS mission in April 2018. That booster may fly again

It is expected to dock with the International Space Station next week.

A robot with true artificial intelligence is about to invade space.

Both Falcon 9 and the Dragon spacecraft for the CRS-15 mission are flight-proven.

The spacecraft, packed with almost 2,700 kg of scientific gear, supplies and vehicle hardware, was lifted off at 5:42 a.m. local time (0942 GMT) from the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida.

The capsule most recently visited the ISS in July 2016 while the booster helped to launch a NASA planet-hunting satellite in April.

The California-based aerospace company headed by Elon Musk is intent on re-using rocket parts and spacecraft to lower the cost of spaceflight.

"Dragon confirmed in good orbit", SpaceX tweeted about eight minutes after the launch, following completion of the second-stage engine burn.

Robot's name for Coot Interactive Mobile Companion is CIMON - and it looks like volleyball with a computer screen on one side.

A project in the works for the past two years, CIMON has been trained to recognize the voice and face of Alexander Gerst, 42, a geophysicist with the European Space Agency.

Hovering at the astronauts' eye level, its front camera can detect if the person in front of it is indeed Gerst, or someone else.

Cimon's human handlers promised the first AI space bot will behave itself and said there would be no mutinous takeovers like HAL from the 1968 film classic 2001: A Space Odyssey'.

It is also created to interpret his emotional state.

Wake up to sunrise SpaceX launch - Early risers will be treated to a SpaceX launch Friday morning that is carrying supplies to astronauts living on the International Space Station.

The robot should be able to guide Gerst through various science procedures, showing videos or pictures as needed.

SpaceX won't retrieve the booster for another flight because it is switching to a new model. On top of that, NASA wanted to make sure its outer space scientists had enough energy, so they also sent super-caffeinated coffee.

The last SpaceX Block 4 Falcon 9 leaves the launch pad at Canaveral's SLC-40 at 5:42 a.m. EDT on June 29, 2018.

With any luck, the rocket can be reused up to 100 times.

Spain dumped out on penalties by Russia
Top French criminal Redoine Faid escapes prison by helicopter