Colour me pedantic but...
Surely something weighing 200lb in microgravity would be a touch too large to move around even by robot? Perhaps what they meant was with a *mass* of 100ish kilos, which up there whould weigh quite a lot less that that?
Dextre, the mighty tonne-and-a-half space robot intended for repair and servicing tasks at the International Space Station (ISS), is now fully operational, according to reports. The 12-foot-tall mechanical maintenance man, a product of cutting-edge Canadian space robotics tech, has been fully assembled and is ready for work. …
The pound is used as a unit of mass as well as weight/force. The word 'weight' was not used in the article, only by yourselves. Sure, a teeny feeble robot could move 200lb masses in microgravity, but it would not be easy or quick. Do try to focus on the 'smart' part of smartarse.
Actually the US pound was defined in grams by Congress, hence it is absolutely appropriate to use it as a unit of mass - and in fact anyone not using kg is far and away more likely to do that than fiddle around with ridiculous slugs, which did indeed exist but never gained wide currency.
As for the British pound, I'd refer you to the UK units of measurement regulations of 1995 (http://www.opsi.gov.uk/SI/si1995/Uksi_19951804_en_2.htm) which specify the pound as the imperial unit of mass and make no mention of the slug.
You carry on with your slugs, mate. The rest of us will use pounds if we aren't using kgs.
"Actually the US pound was defined in grams by Congress,"
Take care, U.S. politicians have rarely been awarded Nobel physics prizes. You do know that they tried to redefine pi to be 3.0? They knew it would make computations so much easier if it were a rational number.
A little knowledge is a dangerous thing...
Your "US" politicians were in fact Indiana state legislators (not federal - that is, US - politicoes). And they didn't try to say pi was 3 either - it was one of several values according to the bill introduced, none of them actually 3 as I recall. The bill was rejected anyway.
A little knowledge, eh? If the shoe fits ...
Anyway, if your judgement of units is based on how many Nobel physics prizes have been dished out by those defining, the slug is without recognition. And indeed it never was much used - Britain went to kgs, and Americans tended to use pounds-mass (ultimately referring to grams) - seeing the slug as a little-used "English" unit. Even though the English weren't using it at all.
If NASA want to talk about an orbital robot heaving pounds of stuff about rather than kilos, they can and they will, and it will make perfect sense to anyone normal.
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