In one of the most bizarre implementations of the tablets, the Russian space program will send a pair of iPad tablets and a stuffed Angry Birds toy to their astronauts at the International Space Station. On October 30th the Progress M-13M, an unmanned resupply spacecraft, will start its trip to the ISS. Along with propellant, oxygen, water and crew equipment, the spacecraft will also be carrying two iPads.
NASA has commented on the issue, saying that the iPads are only for entertainment purpose at the present moment and said that the tablets will join other Apple products on the board, such as iPods and iPhones.
The Angry Birds plush dolls will accompany the Russian crew members into space. Apparently there’s a Russian tradition where astronauts hang a toy fro the launch vehicle, as Russian cosmonaut Anton Shakaplerov told reporters at a press conference. When the ship enters zero gravity, the toy will start to float. The astronauts 5-year-old daughter chose the Angry Birds plush dolls for this trip. “She asked me to fly it – and be sure of its return!” the cosmonaut told reporters. It is also very likely that Rovio’s Angry Birds game will be installed on the space-bound iPads. Rovio will be the first app development company to have a game played in space!
According to sources, NASA is still reviewing other tablet systems and plans to fly at least one more tablet to the ISS next week. A recent NASA video showed that some tablets are being used by NEEMO-15 aquanauts for taks management at its Aquarius undersea habitat.