The PhiSat-1 is the name of history’s first space satellite designed to be fully controlled by artificial intelligence. This scientific and technological breakthrough was just presented with a short demonstration held at the Turin, Italy offices of space pioneers Tyvak International last month.
The demonstration saw a smallish satellite the size of a ceral box, as per Intel’s vivid descriptions, launched from a rocket dispenser as part of a larger ejection wave that included 45 other such contraptions.The experiment was a success, with the PhiSat-1 now traveling at a speed of over 27,500 km/h (17,000 mph) some 530 km (330 m) over Earth.
Intel used the opportunity to demonstrate how its CPU tech is already advanced enough to be entrusted with tasks as critical as spaceflight. Which is a far cry from the days in which we have sent a man to the moon on a rocket whose computer was less capable than your average calculator – from the ’90s.
There is still no word on whether Intel will be expanding into spaceflight in the immediate future however. As for the tech in question, the CPU powering the PhiSat-1 is called the Intel Movidius Myriad 2 Vision Processing Unit and is typically used in smart cameras and drones instead of spacecraft.
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