Project CIMON launches as the first AI assistant in space

July 2, 2018

On Monday, July 2, a SpaceX cargo mission will reach the International Space Station (ISS) more than 200 miles above Earth. Among the supplies arriving at the ISS is CIMON, a medicine ball–size colleague designed to work with Alexander Gerst, the European Space Agency astronaut commanding the Horizons mission.

CIMON, short for Crew Interactive Mobile Companion, is the first AI assistant in space. Built as a partnership between IBM, Airbus, and the German Aerospace Agency (DLR), this free-flying, zero-g-ready AI will be used in various scientific experiments and, in rare moments of downtime, can engage in friendly conversation with Gerst. CIMON joins a long list of space achievements for IBM, which has helped NASA and other organizations from the early space missions to the present.