Russian Scientists to Transform Astronauts Into Cyborgs

PHOTO by Ramil Sitdikov / RIA Novosti
Russian scientists will take part in a programme to transform astronauts into cyborgs by replacing human organs with artificial ones

The plans were announced by Oleg Orlov, director of the Institute for Biomedical Problems at the Russian Academy of Sciences, or IMBP.

As Izvestia reported, implementing mechanical elements is on the list of future projects to be undertaken by state corporations like Roscosmos and the Federal Agency of Scientific Organizations, or FANO.

“Our programme will focus on basic research, laying the foundation for promising technologies that will be required during interplanetary missions,” Orlov said. “As a leading research institute on the subject, we’re entrusted with the task.”

Orlov explained that the cyborg initiative is designed to shield human organs from radiation and other harmful effects during long space flights. “The replacement primarily concerns organs in particular that are prone to failure due to radiation,” he said, adding that the first step would be protecting the human brain.

The project will be also discussed with the Central Research Institute of Machine Building, or TsNIImash. At the same time, Orlov pointed out that this is “day-after-tomorrow technology.”

“In the near future, we could be talking about greater integration of human consciousness with a spacecraft’s monitoring and control system,” Orlov said. “It will become a merged system, focused on developing and refining the brain-computer interface. Many research teams, including those at the Institute for Biomedical Problems, are now engaged in such developments.”

It was reported in December 2015 that the Federal Space Programme for 2016 to 2025 had ruled out any piloted flights to the Moon. But Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin, who oversees the government space industry, has repeatedly expressed the need to explore the Moon, although he commented in August 2015 that earmarking huge sums of money for space missions to the Moon and Mars was irrational due to budget constraints.