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Kennedy Space Center – Robot Scouts


Rating: * * *
Type: Walk-through presentation, with animated displays
Time: 20 minutes
Short Take: A well-done introduction to unmanned space exploration

Our host for this clever overview of current unmanned space exploration missions is Starquester 2000, a robot himself who has been temporarily grounded by a faulty navigational system.

As we walk along a twisting, darkened corridor, we pause at six windows where we get a quick and painless overview of the Voyager, Viking, Cassini, and other missions, as well as the Hubble Space Telescope. These robot scouts attempt to determine if life exists elsewhere in the solar system, whether humans can survive on the various planets and moons they have visited, and in general just how the universe works.

It’s a reminder of how many stunning discoveries have been made in the last few decades by these remote controlled “trailblazers for human exploration,” as Starquester never tires of calling them. And even though this attraction looks forward to a human presence on Mars, it is also a reminder that unmanned space exploration will be standard operating procedure for the foreseeable future.

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