Microsoft’s HoloLens reaches the augmented reality news again, this time taking us to space.
The famous headset will be used to help NASA Astronauts during the missions out of Earth: they will test the gadget straight away aboard the International Space Station as part of Project Sidekick, a project that will enhance astronauts work and life, especially in the fields of training and task efficiency, through the availability of assistance when and where they need it.
HoloLens, infact, used in “Remote Expert Mode”, will make it possible to connect an expert on Earth via Skype with the wearer: the controller will see what the astronaut is seeing and so will be able to help with maintenance and problems. Since in space the connection isn’t always at its best and often delayed , the headset will also operate in “Procedure Mode”, with local instructions and videos that will help solve the main problems immediately.
“HoloLens and other virtual and mixed reality devices are cutting edge technologies that could help drive future exploration and provide new capabilities to the men and women conducting critical science on the International Space Station,” Sam Scimemi, director of the ISS program, said in a statement. “This new technology could also empower future explorers requiring greater autonomy on the journey to Mars.”
Microsoft HoloLens will be tested in two different times and modalities:
– one headset has just departed June 28, with the SpaceX’s seventh commercial resupply mission to the International Space Station; the astronauts will be able to try it and see its potentialities.
– HoloLens will be tested also during NEEMO (Extreme Environment Mission Operations) expedition 20, starting July 21, where they will be tried for two weeks in the world’s only undersea research station, Aquarius, by a team of astronauts and engineers.
Here you can see the first tests of the Sidekick Project: