BB-8 rolls into NASA's Jet Propulsion Lab for adorable field trip

Popular Star Wars droid BB-8 escapes from the silver screen to spend some quality time with NASA's robots.

Even movie star BB-8 needs a visitor badge.

NASA/JPL

When "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" opened in theaters in December, a plucky little droid named BB-8 rolled from the desert of Jakku into our sci-fi-loving hearts. The robotic celebrity took some time for shore leave on Wednesday and went on a tour of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California.

Just like with human visitors, the JPL issued BB-8 a visitor badge worn on a chain. NASA shared a series of photos of BB-8 communing with the space agency's various robots.

BB-8 got its picture taken with an Earth-bound double of the Mars Curiosity rover. The test double lives at a part of the lab known as the "Mars Yard." One area contains a simulated Martian landscape where rovers go through testing and are met with terrain obstacles similar to those found on the Red Planet.

JPL's disaster-relief robot, named RoboSimian, met up with the Star Wars star. RoboSimian gets its name from its monkey-like movement skills. It has four legs that allow it to climb over challenging areas. BB-8 may have felt a little envious of those impressive legs.

Perhaps the most Star Wars-like part of the tour was BB-8's stop at a place known as the Center of the Universe. JPL describes this mission control area as "the hub of communications with space missions all over the solar system and even interstellar space." It's like the control room of the Death Star, only a lot friendlier.

BB-8 looks quite at home in the halls of the JPL. It's a testament to the droid's design that it could so easily mix with NASA's impressively engineered real-life robots.

BB-8 visits JPL

BB-8 rolls after a NASA robot.

NASA/JPL
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