On this day in 1965, astronaut Edward H. White II became the first American to perform Extra Vehicular Activity (EVA), also known as a spacewalk.
As a part of the Gemini 4 mission, astronauts Edward H. White II and James McDivitt were sent on a four day spaceflight, the first multi-day spaceflight by the United States. The mission’s primary objective was to evaluate the effects of prolonged spaceflight and to demonstrate that humans could remain in space for extended periods of time. It’s secondary objective was to conduct the first Extra Vehicular Activity by an American astronaut and to evaluate the ability of the Hand-Held Maneuvering Unit (HHMU), also known as the zip gun, to control the astronaut’s movement.
Edward White, who was lucky enough to perform the first spacewalk, was so enthralled by the experience that he did not want to return to the spacecraft when commanded to.
The transcript from the Gemini 4 mission plays more like a mother calling to her son playing outside to come in for dinner.
McDIVITT: They want you to get back in now.
WHITE (laughing): I’m not coming in… This is fun.
McDIVITT: Come on.
WHITE: Hate to come back to you but I’m coming
McDIVITT: Gosh, you still got three and a half more days to go, buddy
GEMINI CONTROL: You’re got about four minutes to Bermuda.
WHITE: I’m trying to…
McDIVITT: O.K. O.K. Don’t wear yourself out now. Just come in… How you doing there?
WHITE: … whenever a piece of dirt or something goes by, it always heads right for that door and goes on out.
McDIVITT: O.K., come in then.
WHITE: …aren’t you going to hold my hand?
McDIVITT: No, come on in the… Ed, come on in here!
WHITE: All right. I’ll open the door and come through there…
McDIVITT: Come on. Let’s get back in here before it gets dark.
WHITE: It’s the saddest moment of my life.
McDIVITT: Well, you’re going to find it sadder when we have to come down with this thing.
Read more about America’s first spacewalk here: http://motherboard.vice.com/en_ca/blog/americas-first-extra-vehicular-activity
Read the full transcript of the Gemini 4 mission here: http://www.jsc.nasa.gov/history/mission_trans/GT04_TEC.PDF
One of the greatest things about being on a Robotics team is seeing children’s looks of awe when you show them what your robot can do.
And grown adults—running out to check out the robot during parades! Or saying “I don’t even know how to *spell* ‘robot’”
I started this but I didn’t really know where I was going with it so I put a lil’ gradient on it and called it a day. Also this is like an 11”x14” print size so maybe I’ll print one just to have something come out of this summer
And this isn’t creepy at all!
Robot Self-Assembles And Walks
by Michael Keller
Roboticists have developed a flat machine that can fold itself into an operational form and take a walk.
Built mostly from paper and polystyrene plastic that shrinks into a memorized shape when heated, the robot can assemble in around four minutes. It can crawl at roughly 2 inches per second and make turns. The work by Harvard and MIT engineers represents the first time that a robot has self-assembled and performed a function without humans needing to intervene.
“Here we created a full electromechanical system that was embedded into one flat sheet,” said Harvard Microrobotics Lab researcher and doctoral student Sam Felton. “Imagine a ream of dozens of robotic satellites sandwiched together so that they could be sent up to space and then assemble themselves remotely once they get there–they could take images, collect data and more.”
Even if you don’t consider yourself a “science person”, you stand to benefit from FIRST robotics.
DO YOU LIKE:
- blogging, programming: become their social media liaison- help create a blog or a traditional webpage to show off your team to potential mentors and teammates, sponsors, judges. Program your robot so that it, y’know, MOVES. Become the hero of other teams when you rescue their robot from sure disaster 5 minutes before a match.
- drawing, graphic design, computer aided design: work with their web design and create the branding for your team: uniforms, display boards and signage, flags, hats, web graphics, flyers, buttons, stickers, and robot aesthetics. Create a mascot. Learn how to use design software by modelling your robot.
- writing, public speaking: write the content of your team’s promotional materials and letters to sponsors and parents, help your teammates develop scripts for their judging presentations—engineers aren’t known for being the most voluble speakers, but this skill can make or break a team.
- Cosplay: 3D printers! CNC manufacturing! Bandsaws! Dremels! Sandpaper! Screwdrivers! MENTORS that can teach you to use them! My Test Subject Roxy would have been impossible without the help of my mentors and access to my team’s power tools to shape materials like SOLID STEEL (my boot springs!). Team has acrylic scraps? Suddenly you get prop details. Your comfort with wearing bright colors and funky costumes in public, like to public outreach events and competitions, is a boon to your team’s ‘team spirit’ score.
- buddies!!! (shoutout to grady, andrew, claire)
- free college money: a teammate of mine was one of 3 applicants for a FIRST-exclusive scholarship at his university worth up to 2k a year. Here are the rest of the FIRST scholarships, totaling millions. Edit: Here’s my friend who gets 5k a year for an ARTS degree. (Thanks, Andrew!)
- a good time: Competition is tough, but the program is set up to prioritize the value of inter-team cooperation, so competitions are positive spaces.
- the satisfaction of creating something tangible and showing it off
DO YOU NEED
- public speaking skills: hint: you DO
- something to do so your parents stop bugging you
- practice at ANY of the above things, or help learning the skill in the first place: FIRST teams succeed by helping other teams succeed: if you or your team doesn’t know something, the program is set up so other teams DIRECTLY benefit from helping you, and many teams host resources online.
- free college money
If any team you meet says they don’t need non-mechanical skills on their team, they are wrong. Successful teams need non-technical skills to connect effectively with their communities, other teams, and judges. Engineering does not start and end at putting metal together.
-Teacups, FTC 417 Swerve Robotics ‘10-‘13