PHILIPPE PLAILLY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY PHILIPPE PLAILLY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
European robotic arm construction. Engineers working on the European Robotic Arm (ERA) in the clean rooms of the ERA's manufacturer Dutch Space, in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. The ERA will be used on the International Space Station (ISS). The arm is 11.5 metres long, and it will be able to move loads of up to 8 tonnes, including cargo and astronauts. It will also be able to move around the outside of the ISS, carrying out automated repairs. The arm, which can be controlled manually from inside and outside the ISS, will be attached to the Zvezda module. The ERA was built in 2005 and is currently being tested. It is scheduled for launch in 2009.
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