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Japan's space robot phones home for the first time

A Japanese robot orbiting 370 kilometers (230 miles) above the Earth at 27,600 kilometers per hour (17,100 miles per hour) called home for the first time. In video released on Thursday (September 5) but filmed two weeks ago, Kiboro, Japan's first robot astronaut, spoke from the International Space Station (ISS). "On August 21, 2013, robots take their first step towards a shining future," the one kilogram, 34-centimetre-high automaton said as it floated around the ISS. The researchers behind Kirobo - a compounded word made from the words Kibo, or "hope" in Japanese, and Robot - said this is the first time a robot has spoken from space. Kirobo was deployed to the ISS aboard Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency's (JAXA) Kounotori 4 cargo transfer vehicle atop H-IIB rocket on August 4, 2013. The robot is set to conduct experiments in space by taking verbal orders from JAXA's astronaut commander Koichi Wakata and by remote-control from earth.

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