AR devices have not exactly caught on with the general users, particularly after the debacle of Google Glass. Mixed reality tech has collected a sizable amount of attention in a series of professional sectors, from education and medicine to engineering and design. Since 2015, the tech has even made its place in aerospace where NASA and its associates have used Microsoft’s HoloLens service to change how astronauts conduct their responsibilities while in orbit and how spacecraft are built.
NASA and Microsoft’s partnership started on June 28, 2015, as the fraction of Project Sidekick when a supply rocket by SpaceX docked with the ISS and offered the headsets to the astronauts present there. “HoloLens and other mixed & virtual reality machines are advanced techs that can provide new abilities to the people conducting essential science on the ISS and assist drive future exploration,” claimed director of the ISS program at NASA, Sam Scimemi, to the media in an interview. “This new tech can also empower additional explorers needing greater autonomy on the trip to Mars.”
On the ISS, crews used the “Remote Expert Mode” of HoloLens in many of their jobs. Remote Expert links the user with an Earth-supported technician via Skype from the flight control team, letting them to view what the astronaut is seeing and counsel for that reason. The devices could also be used in Procedure Mode, which played locally-amassed animated holographic pictures for times when an expert was not accessible.
On a related note, the Project Artemis by NASA (aptly named as the hunting goddess and is the twin sister of Apollo) plans to take people back to the Moon by the end of 2024. But there are many lingering doubts about the goals, the destination, the project itself, the motivations, whether it has the support in Congress to go forward, and the current readiness level of NASA.