Sample records for spacecraft robotics rovers

  1. Planetary rovers robotic exploration of the solar system

    Ellery, Alex


    The increasing adoption of terrain mobility – planetary rovers – for the investigation of planetary surfaces emphasises their central importance in space exploration. This imposes a completely new set of technologies and methodologies to the design of such spacecraft – and planetary rovers are indeed, first and foremost, spacecraft. This introduces vehicle engineering, mechatronics, robotics, artificial intelligence and associated technologies to the spacecraft engineer’s repertoire of skills. Planetary Rovers is the only book that comprehensively covers these aspects of planetary rover engineering and more. The book: • discusses relevant planetary environments to rover missions, stressing the Moon and Mars; • includes a brief survey of previous rover missions; • covers rover mobility, traction and control systems; • stresses the importance of robotic vision in rovers for both navigation and science; • comprehensively covers autonomous navigation, path planning and multi-rover formations on ...

  2. Electrical power technology for robotic planetary rovers

    Bankston, C. P.; Shirbacheh, M.; Bents, D. J.; Bozek, J. M.


    Power technologies which will enable a range of robotic rover vehicle missions by the end of the 1990s and beyond are discussed. The electrical power system is the most critical system for reliability and life, since all other on board functions (mobility, navigation, command and data, communications, and the scientific payload instruments) require electrical power. The following are discussed: power generation, energy storage, power management and distribution, and thermal management.

  3. Soft-Robotic Rover with Electrodynamic Power Scavenging

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — We propose a rover architecture for Europa and other planetary environments where soft robotics enables scientific investigation or human-precursor missions that...

  4. (abstract) Telecommunications for Mars Rovers and Robotic Missions

    Cesarone, Robert J.; Hastrup, Rolf C.; Horne, William; McOmber, Robert


    Telecommunications plays a key role in all rover and robotic missions to Mars both as a conduit for command information to the mission and for scientific data from the mission. Telecommunications to the Earth may be accomplished using direct-to-Earth links via the Deep Space Network (DSN) or by relay links supported by other missions at Mars. This paper reviews current plans for missions to Mars through the 2005 launch opportunity and their capabilities in support of rover and robotic telecommunications.

  5. Rover Technologies

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Develop and mature rover technologies supporting robotic exploration including rover design, controlling rovers over time delay and for exploring . Technology...

  6. Red rover: inside the story of robotic space exploration, from genesis to the mars rover curiosity

    Wiens, Roger


    In its eerie likeness to Earth, Mars has long captured our imaginations—both as a destination for humankind and as a possible home to extraterrestrial life. It is our twenty-first century New World; its explorers robots, shipped 350 million miles from Earth to uncover the distant planet’s secrets.Its most recent scout is Curiosity—a one-ton, Jeep-sized nuclear-powered space laboratory—which is now roving the Martian surface to determine whether the red planet has ever been physically capable of supporting life. In Red Rover, geochemist Roger Wiens, the principal investigator for the ChemCam laser instrument on the rover and veteran of numerous robotic NASA missions, tells the unlikely story of his involvement in sending sophisticated hardware into space, culminating in the Curiosity rover's amazing journey to Mars.In so doing, Wiens paints the portrait of one of the most exciting scientific stories of our time: the new era of robotic space exploration. Starting with NASA’s introduction of the Discovery...

  7. Rovers Pave the Way for Hospital Robots


    The Jet Propulsion Laboratory provided funding for the Massachusetts Institute of Technology to develop capabilities for robotics like Rocky 7. After developing the operating system, Daniel Theobald started working at Cambridge, Massachusetts-based Vecna Technologies. Today, Vecna's QC Bot incorporates systems based on the NASA work and is being used to ease logistics at hospitals. The technology has contributed to 20 new jobs.

  8. Planetary rover robotics experiment in education: carbonate rock collecting experiment of the Husar-5 rover

    Szalay, Kristóf; Lang, Ágota; Horváth, Tamás; Prajczer, Péter; Bérczi, Szaniszló


    Introduction: The new experiment for the Husar-5 educational space probe rover consists of steps of the technology of procedure of finding carbonate speci-mens among the rocks on the field. 3 main steps were robotized: 1) identification of carbonate by acid test, 2) measuring the gases liberated by acid, and 3) magnetic test. Construction of the experiment: The basis of the robotic realization of the experiment is a romote-controlled rover which can move on the field. Onto this rover the mechanism of the experiments were built from Technics LEGO elements and we used LEGO-motors for making move these experiments. The operation was coordinated by an NXT-brick which was suitable to programming. Fort he acetic-test the drops should be passed to the selected area. Passing a drop to a locality: From the small holder of the acid using densified gas we pump some drop onto the selected rock. We promote this process by pumpig the atmospheric gas into another small gas-container, so we have another higher pressure gas there. This is pumped into the acid-holder. The effect of the reaction is observed by a wireless onboard camera In the next step we can identify the the liberated gas by the gas sensor. Using it we can confirm the liberation of the CO2 gas without outer observer. The third step is the controll of the paramagnetic properties.. In measuring this feature a LEGO-compass is our instrumentation. We use a electric current gener-ated magnet. During the measurements both the coil and the gas-sensor should be positioned to be near to the surface. This means, that a lowering and an uplifting machinery should be constructed. Summary: The sequence of the measurement is the following. 1) the camera - after giving panorama images - turns toward the soil surface, 2) the dropping onto the rock surface 3) at the same time the gas-sensor starts to move down above the rock 4) the compass sensor also moves down on the arm which holds both the gas-sensor and the compass-sensor 5

  9. Microbiological cleanliness of the Mars Exploration Rover spacecraft

    Newlin, L.; Barengoltz, J.; Chung, S.; Kirschner, L.; Koukol, R.; Morales, F.


    Planetary protection for Mars missions is described, and the approach being taken by the Mars Exploration Rover Project is discussed. Specific topics include alcohol wiping, dry heat microbial reduction, microbiological assays, and the Kennedy Space center's PHSF clean room.

  10. Manned spacecraft automation and robotics

    Erickson, Jon D.


    The Space Station holds promise of being a showcase user and driver of advanced automation and robotics technology. The author addresses the advances in automation and robotics from the Space Shuttle - with its high-reliability redundancy management and fault tolerance design and its remote manipulator system - to the projected knowledge-based systems for monitoring, control, fault diagnosis, planning, and scheduling, and the telerobotic systems of the future Space Station.

  11. The University Rover Challenge: A competition highlighting Human and Robotic partnerships for exploration

    Smith, Heather; Duncan, Andrew


    The University Rover Challenge began in 2006 with 4 American college teams competing, now in it's 10th year there are 63 teams from 12 countries registered to compete for the top rover designed to assist humans in the exploration of Mars. The Rovers compete aided by the University teams in four tasks (3 engineering and 1 science) in the Mars analog environment of the Utah Southern Desert in the United States. In this presentation we show amazing rover designs with videos demonstrating the incredible ingenuity, skill and determination of the world's most talented college students. We describe the purpose and results of each of the tasks: Astronaut Assistant, Rover Dexterity, Terrain maneuvering, and Science. We explain the evolution of the competition and common challenges faced by the robotic explorers

  12. A Four-Wheel-Rhombus-Arranged Mobility System for a New Lunar Robotic Rover

    Guilin Wen


    Full Text Available Different from traditional ground vehicles, planetary robotic rovers with limited weight and power need to travel in unfamiliar and extremely arduous environments. In this paper, a newly developed four-wheel-rhombus-arranged (FWRA mobility system is presented as a lunar robotic rover with high mobility and a low-weight structure. The mobility system integrates independent active suspensions with a passive rotary link structure. The active suspension with swing arms improves the rover's capacity to escape from a trapped environment whereas the passive rotary link structure guarantees continuous contact between the four wheels and the terrain. The four-wheel-three-axis rhombus configuration of the mobility system gives a high degree of lightweight structure because it has a simple mechanism with the minimum number of wheels among wheeled rovers with three-axis off-road mobility. The performance evaluation of the lightweight nature of the structure, manoeuvrability and the mobility required in a planetary exploring environment are illustrated by theoretical analysis and partly shown by experiments on the developed rover prototype.

  13. Critical Spacecraft-to-Earth Communications for Mars Exploration Rover (MER) entry, descent and landing

    Hurd, William J.; Estabrook, Polly; Racho, Caroline S.; Satorius, Edgar H.


    For planetary lander missions, the most challenging phase of the spacecraft to ground communications is during the entry, descent, and landing (EDL). As each 2003 Mars Exploration Rover (MER) enters the Martian atmosphere, it slows dramatically. The extreme acceleration and jerk cause extreme Doppler dynamics on the X-band signal received on Earth. When the vehicle slows sufficiently, the parachute is deployed, causing almost a step in deceleration. After parachute deployment, the lander is lowered beneath the parachute on a bridle. The swinging motion of the lander imparts high Doppler dynamics on the signal and causes the received signal strength to vary widely, due to changing antenna pointing angles. All this time, the vehicle transmits important health and status information that is especially critical if the landing is not successful. Even using the largest Deep Space Network antennas, the weak signal and high dynamics render it impossible to conduct reliable phase coherent communications. Therefore, a specialized form of frequency-shift-keying will be used. This paper describes the EDL scenario, the signal conditions, the methods used to detect and frequency-track the carrier and to detect the data modulation, and the resulting performance estimates.

  14. Development of Disk Rover, wall-climbing robot using permanent magnet disk

    Hirose, Shigeo; Tsutsumitake; Hiroshi; Toyama, Ryousei; Kobayashi, Kengo.


    A new type of wall climbing robot, named Disk Rover, using permanent magnet disks are developed. The newly introduced permanent magnet disk is to rotate the magnet disk on the surface of wall with partly contacted posture. It allows to produce high magnetic attraction force compared with conventional permanent wheel which utilizes only a small portion of the magnet installed around the wheel. The optimum design of the magnetic wheel is done by using finit element method and it is shown that the magnetic attraction force vs. weight ratio can be designed about three times higher than conventional type magnet wheel. The developed Disk Rover is 25 kg in weight including controller and battery, about 685 mm in diameter, 239 mm in height and has a pair of permanent magnet disks. It is demonstrated by the experiments that the Disk Rover can move around on the surface of the wall quite smoothly by radio control and has payload of about its own weight. Several considerations are also done in order to surmount bead weld. (author)

  15. A multitasking behavioral control system for the Robotic All-Terrain Lunar Exploration Rover (RATLER)

    Klarer, Paul


    An approach for a robotic control system which implements so called 'behavioral' control within a realtime multitasking architecture is proposed. The proposed system would attempt to ameliorate some of the problems noted by some researchers when implementing subsumptive or behavioral control systems, particularly with regard to multiple processor systems and realtime operations. The architecture is designed to allow synchronous operations between various behavior modules by taking advantage of a realtime multitasking system's intertask communications channels, and by implementing each behavior module and each interconnection node as a stand-alone task. The potential advantages of this approach over those previously described in the field are discussed. An implementation of the architecture is planned for a prototype Robotic All Terrain Lunar Exploration Rover (RATLER) currently under development and is briefly described.

  16. A multitasking behavioral control system for the Robotic All Terrain Lunar Exploration Rover (RATLER)

    Klarer, P.


    An alternative methodology for designing an autonomous navigation and control system is discussed. This generalized hybrid system is based on a less sequential and less anthropomorphic approach than that used in the more traditional artificial intelligence (AI) technique. The architecture is designed to allow both synchronous and asynchronous operations between various behavior modules. This is accomplished by intertask communications channels which implement each behavior module and each interconnection node as a stand-alone task. The proposed design architecture allows for construction of hybrid systems which employ both subsumption and traditional AI techniques as well as providing for a teleoperator's interface. Implementation of the architecture is planned for the prototype Robotic All Terrain Lunar Explorer Rover (RATLER) which is described briefly.

  17. Cerebellum Augmented Rover Development

    King, Matthew


    Bio-Inspired Technologies and Systems (BITS) are a very natural result of thinking about Nature's way of solving problems. Knowledge of animal behaviors an be used in developing robotic behaviors intended for planetary exploration. This is the expertise of the JFL BITS Group and has served as a philosophical model for NMSU RioRobolab. Navigation is a vital function for any autonomous system. Systems must have the ability to determine a safe path between their current location and some target location. The MER mission, as well as other JPL rover missions, uses a method known as dead-reckoning to determine position information. Dead-reckoning uses wheel encoders to sense the wheel's rotation. In a sandy environment such as Mars, this method is highly inaccurate because the wheels will slip in the sand. Improving positioning error will allow the speed of an autonomous navigating rover to be greatly increased. Therefore, local navigation based upon landmark tracking is desirable in planetary exploration. The BITS Group is developing navigation technology based upon landmark tracking. Integration of the current rover architecture with a cerebellar neural network tracking algorithm will demonstrate that this approach to navigation is feasible and should be implemented in future rover and spacecraft missions.

  18. Integrating the Teaching of Space Science, Planetary Exploration And Robotics In Elementary And Middle School with Mars Rover Models

    Bering, E. A.; Ramsey, J.; Smith, H.; Boyko, B. S.; Peck, S.; Arcenaux, W. H.


    The present aerospace engineering and science workforce is ageing. It is not clear that the US education system will produce enough qualified replacements to meet the need in the near future. Unfortunately, by the time many students get to high school, it is often too late to get them pointed toward an engineering or science career. Since some college programs require 6 units of high school mathematics for admission, students need to begin consciously preparing for a science or engineering curriculum as early as 6th or 7th grade. The challenge for educators is to convince elementary school students that science and engineering are both exciting, relevant and accessible career paths. This paper describes a program designed to help provide some excitement and relevance. It is based on the task of developing a mobile robot or "Rover" to explore the surface of Mars. There are two components to the program, a curriculum unit and a contest. The curriculum unit is structured as a 6-week planetary science unit for elementary school (grades 3-5). It can also be used as a curriculum unit, enrichment program or extracurricular activity in grades 6-8 by increasing the expected level of scientific sophistication in the mission design. The second component is a citywide competition to select the most outstanding models that is held annually at a local college or University. Primary (Grades 3-5) and middle school (Grades 6-8) students interested in science and engineering will design and build of a model of a Mars Rover to carry out a specific science mission on the surface of Mars. The students will build the models as part of a 6-week Fall semester classroom-learning or homework project on Mars. The students will be given design criteria for a rover, and be required to do basic research on Mars that will determine the operational objectives and structural features of their rover. This module may be used as part of a class studying general science, earth science, solar system

  19. Automation Rover for Extreme Environments

    Sauder, Jonathan; Hilgemann, Evan; Johnson, Michael; Parness, Aaron; Hall, Jeffrey; Kawata, Jessie; Stack, Kathryn


    Almost 2,300 years ago the ancient Greeks built the Antikythera automaton. This purely mechanical computer accurately predicted past and future astronomical events long before electronics existed1. Automata have been credibly used for hundreds of years as computers, art pieces, and clocks. However, in the past several decades automata have become less popular as the capabilities of electronics increased, leaving them an unexplored solution for robotic spacecraft. The Automaton Rover for Extreme Environments (AREE) proposes an exciting paradigm shift from electronics to a fully mechanical system, enabling longitudinal exploration of the most extreme environments within the solar system.

  20. Dynamics and control of robotic spacecrafts for the transportation of flexible elements

    Wen, Hao; Chen, Ti; Yu, Bensong; Jin, Dongping


    The technology of robotic spacecrafts has been identified as one of the most appealing solutions to the on-orbit construction of large space structures in future space missions. As a prerequisite of a successful on-orbit construction, it is needed to use small autonomous spacecrafts for the transportation of flexible elements. To this end, the paper presents an energy-based scheme to control a couple of robotic spacecrafts carrying a flexible slender structure to its desired position. The flexible structure is modelled as a long beam based on the formulation of absolute nodal coordinates to account for the geometrical nonlinearity due to large displacement. Meanwhile, the robotic spacecrafts are actuated on their rigid-body degrees of freedom and modelled as two rigid bodies attached to the flexible beam. The energy-based controller is designed using the technique of energy shaping and damping injection such that translational and rotational maneuvers can be achieved with the suppression of the flexible vibrations of the beam. Finally, numerical case studies are performed to demonstrate the proposed schemes. (paper)

  1. CRAFT: Collaborative Rover and Astronauts Future Technology

    Da-Poian, V. D. P.; Koryanov, V. V. K.


    Our project is focusing on the relationship between astronauts and rovers to best work together during surface explorations. Robots will help and assist astronauts, and will also work autonomously. Our project is to develop this type of rover.

  2. An Evaluation of Ultra-High Pressure Regulator for Robotic Lunar Landing Spacecraft

    Burnside, Christopher; Trinh, Huu; Pedersen, Kevin


    The Robotic Lunar Lander Development (RLLD) Project Office at NASA Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) has studied several lunar surface science mission concepts. These missions focus on spacecraft carrying multiple science instruments and power systems that will allow extended operations on the lunar surface. Initial trade studies of launch vehicle options for these mission concepts indicate that the spacecraft design will be significantly mass-constrained. To minimize mass and facilitate efficient packaging, the notional propulsion system for these landers has a baseline of an ultra-high pressure (10,000 psig) helium pressurization system that has been used on Defense missiles. The qualified regulator is capable of short duration use; however, the hardware has not been previously tested at NASA spacecraft requirements with longer duration. Hence, technical risks exist in using this missile-based propulsion component for spacecraft applications. A 10,000-psig helium pressure regulator test activity is being carried out as part of risk reduction testing for MSFC RLLD project. The goal of the test activity is to assess the feasibility of commercial off-the-shelf ultra-high pressure regulator by testing with a representative flight mission profile. Slam-start, gas blowdown, water expulsion, lock-up, and leak tests are also performed on the regulator to assess performance under various operating conditions. The preliminary test results indicated that the regulator can regulate helium to a stable outlet pressure of 740 psig within the +/- 5% tolerance band and maintain a lock-up pressure less than +5% for all tests conducted. Numerous leak tests demonstrated leakage less than 10-3 standard cubic centimeters per second (SCCS) for internal seat leakage at lock-up and less than10-5 SCCS for external leakage through the regulator ambient reference cavity. The successful tests have shown the potential for 10,000 psig helium systems in NASA spacecraft and have reduced risk

  3. An Evaluation of a High Pressure Regulator for NASA's Robotic Lunar Lander Spacecraft

    Burnside, Christopher G.; Trinh, Huu P.; Pedersen, Kevin W.


    The Robotic Lunar Lander (RLL) development project office at NASA Marshall Space Flight Center is currently studying several lunar surface science mission concepts. The focus is on spacecraft carrying multiple science instruments and power systems that will allow extended operations on the lunar surface or other air-less bodies in the solar system. Initial trade studies of launch vehicle options indicate the spacecraft will be significantly mass and volume constrained. Because of the investment by the DOD in low mass, highly volume efficient components, NASA has investigated the potential integration of some of these technologies in space science applications. A 10,000 psig helium pressure regulator test activity has been conducted as part of the overall risk reduction testing for the RLL spacecraft. The regulator was subjected to typical NASA acceptance testing to assess the regulator response to the expected RLL mission requirements. The test results show the regulator can supply helium at a stable outlet pressure of 740 psig within a +/- 5% tolerance band and maintain a lock-up pressure less than the +5% above nominal outlet pressure for all tests conducted. Numerous leak tests demonstrated leakage less than 10-3 standard cubic centimeters per second (SCCS) for the internal seat leakage at lock-up and less than 10-5 SCCS for external leakage through the regulator body. The successful test has shown the potential for 10,000 psig helium systems in NASA spacecraft and has reduced risk associated with hardware availability and hardware ability to meet RLL mission requirements.

  4. NASA Mars 2020 Rover Mission: New Frontiers in Science

    Calle, Carlos I.


    The Mars 2020 rover mission is the next step in NASAs robotic exploration of the red planet. The rover, based on the Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity rover now on Mars, will address key questions about the potential for life on Mars. The mission would also provide opportunities to gather knowledge and demonstrate technologies that address the challenges of future human expeditions to Mars.Like the Mars Science Laboratory rover, which has been exploring Mars since 2012, the Mars 2020 spacecraft will use a guided entry, descent, and landing system which includes a parachute, descent vehicle, and, during the provides the ability to land a very large, heavy rover on the surface of Mars in a more precise landing area. The Mars 2020 mission is designed to accomplish several high-priority planetary science goals and will be an important step toward meeting NASAs challenge to send humans to Mars in the 2030s. The mission will conduct geological assessments of the rover's landing site, determine the habitability of the environment, search for signs of ancient Martian life, and assess natural resources and hazards for future human explorers. The science instruments aboard the rover also will enable scientists to identify and select a collection of rock and soil samples that will be stored for potential return to Earth in the future. The rover also may help designers of a human expedition understand the hazards posed by Martian dust and demonstrate how to collect carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, which could be a valuable resource for producing oxygen and rocket fuel.

  5. CMS cavern inspection robot

    Ibrahim, Ibrahim


    Robots which are immune to the CMS cavern environment, wirelessly controlled: -One actuated by smart materials (Ionic Polymer-Metal Composites and Macro Fiber Composites) -One regular brushed DC rover -One servo-driven rover -Stair-climbing robot

  6. The Evolution of Software and Its Impact on Complex System Design in Robotic Spacecraft Embedded Systems

    Butler, Roy


    The growth in computer hardware performance, coupled with reduced energy requirements, has led to a rapid expansion of the resources available to software systems, driving them towards greater logical abstraction, flexibility, and complexity. This shift in focus from compacting functionality into a limited field towards developing layered, multi-state architectures in a grand field has both driven and been driven by the history of embedded processor design in the robotic spacecraft industry.The combinatorial growth of interprocess conditions is accompanied by benefits (concurrent development, situational autonomy, and evolution of goals) and drawbacks (late integration, non-deterministic interactions, and multifaceted anomalies) in achieving mission success, as illustrated by the case of the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. Approaches to optimizing the benefits while mitigating the drawbacks have taken the form of the formalization of requirements, modular design practices, extensive system simulation, and spacecraft data trend analysis. The growth of hardware capability and software complexity can be expected to continue, with future directions including stackable commodity subsystems, computer-generated algorithms, runtime reconfigurable processors, and greater autonomy.

  7. Hybrid Aerial/Rover Vehicle

    Bachelder, Aaron


    A proposed instrumented robotic vehicle called an "aerover" would fly, roll along the ground, and/or float on bodies of liquid, as needed. The aerover would combine features of an aerobot (a robotic lighter-than-air balloon) and a wheeled robot of the "rover" class. An aerover would also look very much like a variant of the "beach-ball" rovers. Although the aerover was conceived for use in scientific exploration of Titan (the largest moon of the planet Saturn), the aerover concept could readily be adapted to similar uses on Earth.

  8. Attitude dynamics and control of a spacecraft like a robotic manipulator when implementing on-orbit servicing

    Da Fonseca, Ijar M.; Goes, Luiz C. S.; Seito, Narumi; da Silva Duarte, Mayara K.; de Oliveira, Élcio Jeronimo


    In space the manipulators working space is characterized by the microgravity environment. In this environment the spacecraft floats and its rotational/translational motion may be excited by any internal and external disturbances. The complete system, i.e., the spacecraft and the associated robotic manipulator, floats and is sensitive to any reaction force and torque related to the manipulator's operation. In this sense the effort done by the robot may result in torque about the system center of mass and also in forces changing its translational motion. This paper analyzes the impact of the robot manipulator dynamics on the attitude motion and the associated control effort to keep the attitude stable during the manipulator's operation. The dynamics analysis is performed in the close proximity phase of rendezvous docking/berthing operation. In such scenario the linear system equations for the translation and attitude relative motions are appropriate. The computer simulations are implemented for the relative translational and rotational motion. The equations of motion have been simulated through computer by using the MatLab software. The LQR and the PID control laws are used for linear and nonlinear control, respectively, aiming to keep the attitude stable while the robot is in and out of service. The gravity-gradient and the residual magnetic torque are considered as external disturbances. The control efforts are analyzed for the manipulator in and out of service. The control laws allow the system stabilization and good performance when the manipulator is in service.

  9. Testing the efficiency of rover science protocols for robotic sample selection: A GeoHeuristic Operational Strategies Test

    Yingst, R. A.; Bartley, J. K.; Chidsey, T. C.; Cohen, B. A.; Gilleaudeau, G. J.; Hynek, B. M.; Kah, L. C.; Minitti, M. E.; Williams, R. M. E.; Black, S.; Gemperline, J.; Schaufler, R.; Thomas, R. J.


    The GHOST field tests are designed to isolate and test science-driven rover operations protocols, to determine best practices. During a recent field test at a potential Mars 2020 landing site analog, we tested two Mars Science Laboratory data-acquisition and decision-making methods to assess resulting science return and sample quality: a linear method, where sites of interest are studied in the order encountered, and a "walkabout-first" method, where sites of interest are examined remotely before down-selecting to a subset of sites that are interrogated with more resource-intensive instruments. The walkabout method cost less time and fewer resources, while increasing confidence in interpretations. Contextual data critical to evaluating site geology was acquired earlier than for the linear method, and given a higher priority, which resulted in development of more mature hypotheses earlier in the analysis process. Combined, this saved time and energy in the collection of data with more limited spatial coverage. Based on these results, we suggest that the walkabout method be used where doing so would provide early context and time for the science team to develop hypotheses-critical tests; and that in gathering context, coverage may be more important than higher resolution.

  10. Robotics_MobileRobot Navigation, Phase I

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Robots and rovers exploring planets need to autonomously navigate to specified locations. Advanced Scientific Concepts, Inc. (ASC) and the University of Minnesota...

  11. Free-Flying Unmanned Robotic Spacecraft for Asteroid Resource Prospecting and Characterization, Phase II

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — In Phase 2 we will develop a fully integrated, autonomous free-flying robotic system based on a commercial SkyJib quadcopter, and demonstrate flying straight and...

  12. GIS Methodology for Planning Planetary-Rover Operations

    Powell, Mark; Norris, Jeffrey; Fox, Jason; Rabe, Kenneth; Shu, I-Hsiang


    A document describes a methodology for utilizing image data downlinked from cameras aboard a robotic ground vehicle (rover) on a remote planet for analyzing and planning operations of the vehicle and of any associated spacecraft. Traditionally, the cataloging and presentation of large numbers of downlinked planetary-exploration images have been done by use of two organizational methods: temporal organization and correlation between activity plans and images. In contrast, the present methodology involves spatial indexing of image data by use of the computational discipline of geographic information systems (GIS), which has been maturing in terrestrial applications for decades, but, until now, has not been widely used in support of exploration of remote planets. The use of GIS to catalog data products for analysis is intended to increase efficiency and effectiveness in planning rover operations, just as GIS has proven to be a source of powerful computational tools in such terrestrial endeavors as law enforcement, military strategic planning, surveying, political science, and epidemiology. The use of GIS also satisfies the need for a map-based user interface that is intuitive to rover-activity planners, many of whom are deeply familiar with maps and know how to use them effectively in field geology.

  13. Mission-directed path planning for planetary rover exploration

    Tompkins, Paul


    Robotic rovers uniquely benefit planetary exploration---they enable regional exploration with the precision of in-situ measurements, a combination impossible from an orbiting spacecraft or fixed lander. Mission planning for planetary rover exploration currently utilizes sophisticated software for activity planning and scheduling, but simplified path planning and execution approaches tailored for localized operations to individual targets. This approach is insufficient for the investigation of multiple, regionally distributed targets in a single command cycle. Path planning tailored for this task must consider the impact of large scale terrain on power, speed and regional access; the effect of route timing on resource availability; the limitations of finite resource capacity and other operational constraints on vehicle range and timing; and the mutual influence between traverses and upstream and downstream stationary activities. Encapsulating this reasoning in an efficient autonomous planner would allow a rover to continue operating rationally despite significant deviations from an initial plan. This research presents mission-directed path planning that enables an autonomous, strategic reasoning capability for robotic explorers. Planning operates in a space of position, time and energy. Unlike previous hierarchical approaches, it treats these dimensions simultaneously to enable globally-optimal solutions. The approach calls on a near incremental search algorithm designed for planning and re-planning under global constraints, in spaces of higher than two dimensions. Solutions under this method specify routes that avoid terrain obstacles, optimize the collection and use of rechargable energy, satisfy local and global mission constraints, and account for the time and energy of interleaved mission activities. Furthermore, the approach efficiently re-plans in response to updates in vehicle state and world models, and is well suited to online operation aboard a robot

  14. Historical Trends of Participation of Women Scientists in Robotic Spacecraft Mission Science Teams: Effect of Participating Scientist Programs

    Rathbun, Julie A.; Castillo-Rogez, Julie; Diniega, Serina; Hurley, Dana; New, Michael; Pappalardo, Robert T.; Prockter, Louise; Sayanagi, Kunio M.; Schug, Joanna; Turtle, Elizabeth P.; Vasavada, Ashwin R.


    Many planetary scientists consider involvement in a robotic spacecraft mission the highlight of their career. We have searched for names of science team members and determined the percentage of women on each team. We have limited the lists to members working at US institutions at the time of selection. We also determined the year each team was selected. The gender of each team member was limited to male and female and based on gender expression. In some cases one of the authors knew the team member and what pronouns they use. In other cases, we based our determinations on the team member's name or photo (obtained via a google search, including institution). Our initial analysis considered 22 NASA planetary science missions over a period of 41 years and only considered NASA-selected PI and Co-Is and not participating scientists, postdocs, or graduate students. We found that there has been a dramatic increase in participation of women on spacecraft science teams since 1974, from 0-2% in the 1970s - 1980s to an average of 14% 2000-present. This, however, is still lower than the recent percentage of women in planetary science, which 3 different surveys found to be ~25%. Here we will present our latest results, which include consideration of participating scientists. As in the case of PIs and Co-Is, we consider only participating scientists working at US institutions at the time of their selection.

  15. Evolved Design, Integration, and Test of a Modular, Multi-Link, Spacecraft-Based Robotic Manipulator


    Input 6 Config,0 80,0,Amp Model Number,DEP-090-09 86,0, Servo Period,4 8a,0,Voltage Sense,2262 92,0,Amp Name,Current 98,0,Function Generator Config...Los Angeles, CA, 2008, pp. 25–29. [3] M. J. Mataric, The Robotics Primer, Cambridge, MA: MIT Press , 2007. [4] K. Shamaei, Y. Che, A. Murali, S...Online]. Available: servo -drives/dc-bus/dep. Accessed Apr. 21, 2016. [38] All About Circuits. “Wiring color

  16. Robotics

    Popov, E. P.; Iurevich, E. I.

    The history and the current status of robotics are reviewed, as are the design, operation, and principal applications of industrial robots. Attention is given to programmable robots, robots with adaptive control and elements of artificial intelligence, and remotely controlled robots. The applications of robots discussed include mechanical engineering, cargo handling during transportation and storage, mining, and metallurgy. The future prospects of robotics are briefly outlined.

  17. Pressurized Lunar Rover (PLR)

    Creel, Kenneth; Frampton, Jeffrey; Honaker, David; McClure, Kerry; Zeinali, Mazyar; Bhardwaj, Manoj; Bulsara, Vatsal; Kokan, David; Shariff, Shaun; Svarverud, Eric

    The objective of this project was to design a manned pressurized lunar rover (PLR) for long-range transportation and for exploration of the lunar surface. The vehicle must be capable of operating on a 14-day mission, traveling within a radius of 500 km during a lunar day or within a 50-km radius during a lunar night. The vehicle must accommodate a nominal crew of four, support two 28-hour EVA's, and in case of emergency, support a crew of six when near the lunar base. A nominal speed of ten km/hr and capability of towing a trailer with a mass of two mt are required. Two preliminary designs have been developed by two independent student teams. The PLR 1 design proposes a seven meter long cylindrical main vehicle and a trailer which houses the power and heat rejection systems. The main vehicle carries the astronauts, life support systems, navigation and communication systems, lighting, robotic arms, tools, and equipment for exploratory experiments. The rover uses a simple mobility system with six wheels on the main vehicle and two on the trailer. The nonpressurized trailer contains a modular radioisotope thermoelectric generator (RTG) supplying 6.5 kW continuous power. A secondary energy storage for short-term peak power needs is provided by a bank of lithium-sulfur dioxide batteries. The life support system is partly a regenerative system with air and hygiene water being recycled. A layer of water inside the composite shell surrounds the command center allowing the center to be used as a safe haven during solar flares. The PLR 1 has a total mass of 6197 kg. It has a top speed of 18 km/hr and is capable of towing three metric tons, in addition to the RTG trailer. The PLR 2 configuration consists of two four-meter diameter, cylindrical hulls which are passively connected by a flexible passageway, resulting in the overall vehicle length of 11 m. The vehicle is driven by eight independently suspended wheels. The dual-cylinder concept allows articulated as well as double

  18. Mars 2020 Rover SHERLOC Calibration Target

    Graff, Trevor; Fries, Marc; Burton, Aaron; Ross, Amy; Larson, Kristine; Garrison, Dan; Calaway, Mike; Tran, Vinh; Bhartia, Roh; Beegle, Luther


    The Scanning Habitable Environments with Raman & Luminescence for Organics & Chemicals (SHERLOC) instrument is a deep ultraviolet (UV) Raman Fluorescence instrument selected as part of the Mars 2020 rover instrument suite. SHERLOC will be mounted on the rover arm and its primary role is to identify carbonaceous species in martian samples. The SHERLOC instrument requires a calibration target which is being designed and fabricated at JSC as part of our continued science participation in Mars robotic missions. The SHERLOC calibration target will address a wide range of NASA goals to include basic science of interest to both the Science Mission Directorate and Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate.

  19. Robotics

    Scheide, A.W.


    This article reviews some of the technical areas and history associated with robotics, provides information relative to the formation of a Robotics Industry Committee within the Industry Applications Society (IAS), and describes how all activities relating to robotics will be coordinated within the IEEE. Industrial robots are being used for material handling, processes such as coating and arc welding, and some mechanical and electronics assembly. An industrial robot is defined as a programmable, multifunctional manipulator designed to move material, parts, tools, or specialized devices through variable programmed motions for a variety of tasks. The initial focus of the Robotics Industry Committee will be on the application of robotics systems to the various industries that are represented within the IAS

  20. Robotics

    Lorino, P; Altwegg, J M


    This article, which is aimed at the general reader, examines latest developments in, and the role of, modern robotics. The 7 main sections are sub-divided into 27 papers presented by 30 authors. The sections are as follows: 1) The role of robotics, 2) Robotics in the business world and what it can offer, 3) Study and development, 4) Utilisation, 5) Wages, 6) Conditions for success, and 7) Technological dynamics.

  1. Radiation beamline testbeds for the simulation of planetary and spacecraft environments for human and robotic mission risk assessment

    Wilkins, Richard

    The Center for Radiation Engineering and Science for Space Exploration (CRESSE) at Prairie View A&M University, Prairie View, Texas, USA, is establishing an integrated, multi-disciplinary research program on the scientific and engineering challenges faced by NASA and the inter-national space community caused by space radiation. CRESSE focuses on space radiation research directly applicable to astronaut health and safety during future long term, deep space missions, including Martian, lunar, and other planetary body missions beyond low earth orbit. The research approach will consist of experimental and theoretical radiation modeling studies utilizing particle accelerator facilities including: 1. NASA Space Radiation Laboratory (NSRL) at Brookhaven National Laboratory; 2. Proton Synchrotron at Loma Linda University Med-ical Center; and 3. Los Alamos Neutron Science Center (LANSCE) at Los Alamos National Laboratory. Specifically, CRESSE investigators are designing, developing, and building experimental test beds that simulate the lunar and Martian radiation environments for experiments focused on risk assessment for astronauts and instrumentation. The testbeds have been designated the Bioastronautics Experimental Research Testbeds for Environmental Radiation Nostrum Investigations and Education (BERT and ERNIE). The designs of BERT and ERNIE will allow for a high degree of flexibility and adaptability to modify experimental configurations to simulate planetary surface environments, planetary habitats, and spacecraft interiors. In the nominal configuration, BERT and ERIE will consist of a set of experimental zones that will simulate the planetary atmosphere (Solid CO2 in the case of the Martian surface.), the planetary surface, and sub-surface regions. These experimental zones can be used for dosimetry, shielding, biological, and electronic effects radiation studies in support of space exploration missions. BERT and ERNIE are designed to be compatible with the

  2. Spacecraft operations

    Sellmaier, Florian; Schmidhuber, Michael


    The book describes the basic concepts of spaceflight operations, for both, human and unmanned missions. The basic subsystems of a space vehicle are explained in dedicated chapters, the relationship of spacecraft design and the very unique space environment are laid out. Flight dynamics are taught as well as ground segment requirements. Mission operations are divided into preparation including management aspects, execution and planning. Deep space missions and space robotic operations are included as special cases. The book is based on a course held at the German Space Operation Center (GSOC).

  3. Autonomous navigation and control of a Mars rover

    Miller, D. P.; Atkinson, D. J.; Wilcox, B. H.; Mishkin, A. H.


    A Mars rover will need to be able to navigate autonomously kilometers at a time. This paper outlines the sensing, perception, planning, and execution monitoring systems that are currently being designed for the rover. The sensing is based around stereo vision. The interpretation of the images use a registration of the depth map with a global height map provided by an orbiting spacecraft. Safe, low energy paths are then planned through the map, and expectations of what the rover's articulation sensors should sense are generated. These expectations are then used to ensure that the planned path is correctly being executed.

  4. Vibration and Acoustic Testing for Mars Micromission Spacecraft

    Kern, Dennis L.; Scharton, Terry D.


    The objective of the Mars Micromission program being managed by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) for NASA is to develop a common spacecraft that can carry telecommunications equipment and a variety of science payloads for exploration of Mars. The spacecraft will be capable of carrying robot landers and rovers, cameras, probes, balloons, gliders or aircraft, and telecommunications equipment to Mars at much lower cost than recent NASA Mars missions. The lightweight spacecraft (about 220 Kg mass) will be launched in a cooperative venture with CNES as a TWIN auxiliary payload on the Ariane 5 launch vehicle. Two or more Mars Micromission launches are planned for each Mars launch opportunity, which occur every 26 months. The Mars launch window for the first mission is November 1, 2002 through April 2003, which is planned to be a Mars airplane technology demonstration mission to coincide with the 100 year anniversary of the Kittyhawk flight. Several subsequent launches will create a telecommunications network orbiting Mars, which will provide for continuous communication with lenders and rovers on the Martian surface. Dedicated science payload flights to Mars are slated to start in 2005. This new cheaper and faster approach to Mars exploration calls for innovative approaches to the qualification of the Mars Micromission spacecraft for the Ariane 5 launch vibration and acoustic environments. JPL has in recent years implemented new approaches to spacecraft testing that may be effectively applied to the Mars Micromission. These include 1) force limited vibration testing, 2) combined loads, vibration and modal testing, and 3) direct acoustic testing. JPL has performed nearly 200 force limited vibration tests in the past 9 years; several of the tests were on spacecraft and large instruments, including the Cassini and Deep Space One spacecraft. Force limiting, which measures and limits the spacecraft base reaction force using triaxial force gages sandwiched between the

  5. Night Rover Challenge

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The objective of the Night Rover Challenge was to foster innovations in energy storage technology. Specifically, this challenge asked competitors to create an energy...

  6. Mars Rover Model Celebration: Developing Inquiry Based Lesson Plans to Teach Planetary Science In Elementary And Middle School

    Bering, E. A.; Slagle, E.; Nieser, K.; Carlson, C.; Kapral, A.; Dominey, W.; Ramsey, J.; Konstantinidis, I.; James, J.; Sweaney, S.; Mendez, R.


    The recent NASA Mars Rover missions capture the imagination of children, as NASA missions have done for decades. The University of Houston is in the process of developing a prototype of a flexible program that offers children an in-depth educational experience culminating in the design and construction of their own model rover. The existing prototype program is called the Mars Rover Model Celebration. It focuses on students, teachers and parents in grades 3-8. Students will design and build a model of a Mars rover to carry out a student selected science mission on the surface of Mars. The model will be a mock-up, constructed at a minimal cost from art supplies. The students will build the models as part of a project on Mars. The students will be given design criteria for a rover and will do basic research on Mars that will determine the objectives and features of their rover. This project may be used either informally as an after school club or youth group activity or formally as part of a class studying general science, earth science, solar system astronomy or robotics, or as a multi-disciplinary unit for a gifted and talented program. The project's unique strength lies in engaging students in the process of spacecraft design and interesting them in aerospace engineering careers. The project is aimed at elementary and secondary education. Not only will these students learn about scientific fields relevant to the mission (space science, physics, geology, robotics, and more), they will gain an appreciation for how this knowledge is used to tackle complex problems. The low cost of the event makes it an ideal enrichment vehicle for low income schools. It provides activities that provide professional development to educators, curricular support resources using NASA Science Mission Directorate (SMD) content, and provides family opportunities for involvement in K-12 student learning. This paper will describe the development of a detailed set of new 5E lesson plans to

  7. Improving Planetary Rover Attitude Estimation via MEMS Sensor Characterization

    Hidalgo, Javier; Poulakis, Pantelis; Köhler, Johan; Del-Cerro, Jaime; Barrientos, Antonio


    Micro Electro-Mechanical Systems (MEMS) are currently being considered in the space sector due to its suitable level of performance for spacecrafts in terms of mechanical robustness with low power consumption, small mass and size, and significant advantage in system design and accommodation. However, there is still a lack of understanding regarding the performance and testing of these new sensors, especially in planetary robotics. This paper presents what is missing in the field: a complete methodology regarding the characterization and modeling of MEMS sensors with direct application. A reproducible and complete approach including all the intermediate steps, tools and laboratory equipment is described. The process of sensor error characterization and modeling through to the final integration in the sensor fusion scheme is explained with detail. Although the concept of fusion is relatively easy to comprehend, carefully characterizing and filtering sensor information is not an easy task and is essential for good performance. The strength of the approach has been verified with representative tests of novel high-grade MEMS inertia sensors and exemplary planetary rover platforms with promising results. PMID:22438761

  8. Robotics

    netic induction to detect an object. The development of ... end effector, inclination of object, magnetic and electric fields, etc. The sensors described ... In the case of a robot, the various actuators and motors have to be modelled. The major ...

  9. Visual Prediction of Rover Slip: Learning Algorithms and Field Experiments


    of the terrain slope [29]. The results are also specific to the vehicle. For example, a small design modification in the pattern of the wheels can...robot has two front differential drive wheels and two rear caster wheels . 2This difference is not directly relevant to the goals of this work. 22 Figure...rover pose and is a quantity which measures the lack of progress of a wheeled ground robot while traversing some terrain. A trivial example of large

  10. Mission Operations of the Mars Exploration Rovers

    Bass, Deborah; Lauback, Sharon; Mishkin, Andrew; Limonadi, Daniel


    A document describes a system of processes involved in planning, commanding, and monitoring operations of the rovers Spirit and Opportunity of the Mars Exploration Rover mission. The system is designed to minimize command turnaround time, given that inherent uncertainties in terrain conditions and in successful completion of planned landed spacecraft motions preclude planning of some spacecraft activities until the results of prior activities are known by the ground-based operations team. The processes are partitioned into those (designated as tactical) that must be tied to the Martian clock and those (designated strategic) that can, without loss, be completed in a more leisurely fashion. The tactical processes include assessment of downlinked data, refinement and validation of activity plans, sequencing of commands, and integration and validation of sequences. Strategic processes include communications planning and generation of long-term activity plans. The primary benefit of this partition is to enable the tactical portion of the team to focus solely on tasks that contribute directly to meeting the deadlines for commanding the rover s each sol (1 sol = 1 Martian day) - achieving a turnaround time of 18 hours or less, while facilitating strategic team interactions with other organizations that do not work on a Mars time schedule.

  11. Ambler - An autonomous rover for planetary exploration

    Bares, John; Hebert, Martial; Kanade, Takeo; Krotkov, Eric; Mitchell, Tom


    The authors are building a prototype legged rover, called the Ambler (loosely an acronym for autonomous mobile exploration robot) and testing it on full-scale, rugged terrain of the sort that might be encountered on the Martian surface. They present an overview of their research program, focusing on locomotion, perception, planning, and control. They summarize some of the most important goals and requirements of a rover design and describe how locomotion, perception, and planning systems can satisfy these requirements. Since the program is relatively young (one year old at the time of writing) they identify issues and approaches and describe work in progress rather than report results. It is expected that many of the technologies developed will be applicable to other planetary bodies and to terrestrial concerns such as hazardous waste assessment and remediation, ocean floor exploration, and mining.

  12. Rover waste assay system

    Akers, D.W.; Stoots, C.M.; Kraft, N.C.; Marts, D.J. [Idaho National Engineering Lab., Idaho Falls, ID (United States)


    The Rover Waste Assay System (RWAS) is a nondestructive assay system designed for the rapid assay of highly-enriched {sup 235}U contaminated piping, tank sections, and debris from the Rover nuclear rocket fuel processing facility at the Idaho Chemical Processing Plant. A scanning system translates a NaI(Tl) detector/collimator system over the structural components where both relative and calibrated measurements for {sup 137}Cs are made. Uranium-235 concentrations are in operation and is sufficiently automated that most functions are performed by the computer system. These functions include system calibration, problem identification, collimator control, data analysis, and reporting. Calibration of the system was done through a combination of measurements on calibration standards and benchmarked modeling. A description of the system is presented along with the methods and uncertainties associated with the calibration and analysis of the system for components from the Rover facility. 4 refs., 2 figs., 4 tabs.

  13. Rover waste assay system

    Akers, D.W.; Stoots, C.M.; Kraft, N.C.; Marts, D.J.


    The Rover Waste Assay System (RWAS) is a nondestructive assay system designed for the rapid assay of highly-enriched 235 U contaminated piping, tank sections, and debris from the Rover nuclear rocket fuel processing facility at the Idaho Chemical Processing Plant. A scanning system translates a NaI(Tl) detector/collimator system over the structural components where both relative and calibrated measurements for 137 Cs are made. Uranium-235 concentrations are in operation and is sufficiently automated that most functions are performed by the computer system. These functions include system calibration, problem identification, collimator control, data analysis, and reporting. Calibration of the system was done through a combination of measurements on calibration standards and benchmarked modeling. A description of the system is presented along with the methods and uncertainties associated with the calibration and analysis of the system for components from the Rover facility. 4 refs., 2 figs., 4 tabs

  14. A Modular Re-configurable Rover System

    Bouloubasis, A.; McKee, G.; Active Robotics Lab

    design allows the MTR to lift, lower, roll or tilt its body. It also provides the ability to lift any of the legs by nearly 300mm, enhancing internal re-configurability and therefore rough terrain stability off the robotic vehicle. A modular software and control architecture will be used so that integration to, and operation through the MTR, of different Packs can be demonstrated. An on-board high-level controller [4] will communicate with a small network of micro-controllers through an RS485 bus. Additional processing power could be obtained through a Pack with equivalent or higher computational capabilities. 1 The nature of the system offers many opportunities for behavior based control. The control system must accommodate not only rover based behaviors like obstacle avoidance and vehicle stabilization, but also any additional behaviors that different Packs may introduce. The Ego-Behavior Architecture (EBA) [5] comprises a number of behaviors which operate autonomously and independent of each other. This facilitates the design and suits the operation of the MTR since it fulfills the need for uncomplicated assimilation of new behaviors in the existing architecture. Our work at the moment focuses on the design and construction of the mechanical and electronic systems for the MTR and an associated Pack. References [1] NASA, Human Exploration of Mars: The Reference Mission (Version 3.0 with June, 1998 Addendum) of the NASA Mars Exploration Study Team, Exploration Office, Advanced Development Office, Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center, Houston, TX 77058, June, 1998. [2] A. Trebi-Ollennu, H Das Nayer, H Aghazarian, A ganino, P Pirjanian, B Kennedy, T Huntsberger and P Schenker, Mars Rover Pair Cooperatively Transporting a Long Payload, in Proceedings of the 2002 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation, May 2002, pp. 3136-3141. [3] A. K. Bouloubasis, G. T McKee, P. S. Schenker, A Behavior-Based Manipulator for Multi-Robot Transport Tasks, in proceedings of the

  15. AIAA Educator Academy - Mars Rover Curriculum: A 6 week multidisciplinary space science based curriculum

    Henriquez, E.; Bering, E. A.; Slagle, E.; Nieser, K.; Carlson, C.; Kapral, A.


    The Curiosity mission has captured the imagination of children, as NASA missions have done for decades. The AIAA and the University of Houston have developed a flexible curriculum program that offers children in-depth science and language arts learning culminating in the design and construction of their own model rover. The program is called the Mars Rover Model Celebration. It focuses on students, teachers and parents in grades 3-8. Students learn to research Mars in order to pick a science question about Mars that is of interest to them. They learn principles of spacecraft design in order to build a model of a Mars rover to carry out their mission on the surface of Mars. The model is a mock-up, constructed at a minimal cost from art supplies. This project may be used either informally as an after school club or youth group activity or formally as part of a class studying general science, earth science, solar system astronomy or robotics, or as a multi-disciplinary unit for a gifted and talented program. The project's unique strength lies in engaging students in the process of spacecraft design and interesting them in aerospace engineering careers. The project is aimed at elementary and secondary education. Not only will these students learn about scientific fields relevant to the mission (space science, physics, geology, robotics, and more), they will gain an appreciation for how this knowledge is used to tackle complex problems. The low cost of the event makes it an ideal enrichment vehicle for low income schools. It provides activities that provide professional development to educators, curricular support resources using NASA Science Mission Directorate (SMD) content, and provides family opportunities for involvement in K-12 student learning. This paper will describe the structure and organization of the 6 week curriculum. A set of 30 new 5E lesson plans have been written to support this project as a classroom activity. The challenge of developing interactive

  16. Bringing Terramechanics to bear on Planetary Rover Design

    Richter, L.


    Thus far, planetary rovers have been successfully operated on the Earth's moon and on Mars. In particular, the two NASA Mars Exploration Rovers (MERs) ,Spirit' and ,Opportunity' are still in sustained daily operations at two sites on Mars more than 3 years after landing there. Currently, several new planetary rover missions are in development targeting Mars (the US Mars Science Lab vehicle for launch in 2009 and ESA's ExoMars rover for launch in 2013), with lunar rover missions under study by China and Japan for launches around 2012. Moreover, the US Constellation program is preparing pre-development of lunar rovers for initially unmanned and, subsequently, human missions to the Moon with a corresponding team dedicated to mobility system development having been set up at the NASA Glenn Research Center. Given this dynamic environment, it was found timely to establish an expert group on off-the-road mobility as relevant for robotic vehicles that would involve individuals representing the various on-going efforts on the different continents. This was realized through the International Society of Terrain-Vehicle Systems (ISTVS), a research organisation devoted to terramechanics and to the ,science' of off-the-road vehicle development which as a result is just now establishing a Technical Group on Terrestrial and Planetary Rovers. Members represent space-related as well as military research institutes and universities from the US, Germany, Italy, and Japan. The group's charter for 2007 is to define its objectives, functions, organizational structure and recommended research objectives to support planetary rover design and development. Expected areas of activity of the ISTVS-sponsored group include: the problem of terrain specification for planetary rovers; identification of limitations in modelling of rover mobility; a survey of existing rover mobility testbeds; the consolidation of mobility predictive models and their state of validation; sensing and real

  17. Preparing to Test Rover Mobility


    Rover engineers prepare a mixture of sandy and powdery materials to simulate some difficult Mars driving conditions inside a facility at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. The tests in early May 2005 were designed to help plan the best way for the rover Opportunity to drive off of a soft-sand dune that the rover dug itself into the previous week.

  18. Absolute Navigation Information Estimation for Micro Planetary Rovers

    Muhammad Ilyas


    Full Text Available This paper provides algorithms to estimate absolute navigation information, e.g., absolute attitude and position, by using low power, weight and volume Microelectromechanical Systems-type (MEMS sensors that are suitable for micro planetary rovers. Planetary rovers appear to be easily navigable robots due to their extreme slow speed and rotation but, unfortunately, the sensor suites available for terrestrial robots are not always available for planetary rover navigation. This makes them difficult to navigate in a completely unexplored, harsh and complex environment. Whereas the relative attitude and position can be tracked in a similar way as for ground robots, absolute navigation information, unlike in terrestrial applications, is difficult to obtain for a remote celestial body, such as Mars or the Moon. In this paper, an algorithm called the EASI algorithm (Estimation of Attitude using Sun sensor and Inclinometer is presented to estimate the absolute attitude using a MEMS-type sun sensor and inclinometer, only. Moreover, the output of the EASI algorithm is fused with MEMS gyros to produce more accurate and reliable attitude estimates. An absolute position estimation algorithm has also been presented based on these on-board sensors. Experimental results demonstrate the viability of the proposed algorithms and the sensor suite for low-cost and low-weight micro planetary rovers.

  19. An update on Lab Rover: A hospital material transporter

    Mattaboni, Paul


    The development of a hospital material transporter, 'Lab Rover', is described. Conventional material transport now utilizes people power, push carts, pneumatic tubes and tracked vehicles. Hospitals are faced with enormous pressure to reduce operating costs. Cyberotics, Inc. developed an Autonomous Intelligent Vehicle (AIV). This battery operated service robot was designed specifically for health care institutions. Applications for the AIV include distribution of clinical lab samples, pharmacy drugs, administrative records, x-ray distribution, meal tray delivery, and certain emergency room applications. The first AIV was installed at Lahey Clinic in Burlington, Mass. Lab Rover was beta tested for one year and has been 'on line' for an additional 2 years.

  20. Telecommunications for Mars Rovers and Robotic Mission

    Horne, W. D.; Hastrup, R.; Cesarone, R.


    The Mars exploration program of NASA and the international community will evolve from an early emphasis on orbital remote sensing toward in-situ science activity on, or just above, the Martian surface.

  1. Telecommunications for Mars Rovers and Robotic Missions

    Horne, W. D.; Hastrup, R.; Cesarone, R.


    The Mars exploration program of NASA and the international community will evolve from an early emphasis on orbital remote sensing toward in situ science activity on, or just above, the Martian surface.

  2. Requirements and Designs for Mars Rover RTGs

    Schock, Alfred; Shirbacheh, M; Sankarankandath, V


    The current-generation RTGs (both GPHS and MOD) are designed for operation in a vacuum environment. The multifoil thermal insulation used in those RTGs only functions well in a good vacuum. Current RTGs are designed to operate with an inert cover gas before launch, and to be vented to space vacuum after launch. Both RTGs are sealed with a large number of metallic C-rings. Those seals are adequate for retaining the inert-gas overpressure during short-term launch operations, but would not be adequate to prevent intrusion of the Martian atmospheric gases during long-term operations there. Therefore, for the Mars Rover application, those RTGs just be modified to prevent the buildup of significant pressures of Mars atmosphere or of helium (from alpha decay of the fuel). In addition, a Mars Rover RTG needs to withstand a long-term dynamic environment that is much more severe than that seen by an RTG on an orbiting spacecraft or on a stationary planetary lander. This paper describes a typical Rover mission, its requirements, the environment it imposes on the RTG, and a design approach for making the RTG operable in such an environment. Specific RTG designs for various thermoelectric element alternatives are presented.; Reference CID #9268 and CID #9276.

  3. Third International Symposium on Artificial Intelligence, Robotics, and Automation for Space 1994


    The Third International Symposium on Artificial Intelligence, Robotics, and Automation for Space (i-SAIRAS 94), held October 18-20, 1994, in Pasadena, California, was jointly sponsored by NASA, ESA, and Japan's National Space Development Agency, and was hosted by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) of the California Institute of Technology. i-SAIRAS 94 featured presentations covering a variety of technical and programmatic topics, ranging from underlying basic technology to specific applications of artificial intelligence and robotics to space missions. i-SAIRAS 94 featured a special workshop on planning and scheduling and provided scientists, engineers, and managers with the opportunity to exchange theoretical ideas, practical results, and program plans in such areas as space mission control, space vehicle processing, data analysis, autonomous spacecraft, space robots and rovers, satellite servicing, and intelligent instruments.

  4. Onboard autonomous mineral detectors for Mars rovers

    Gilmore, M. S.; Bornstein, B.; Castano, R.; Merrill, M.; Greenwood, J.


    Mars rovers and orbiters currently collect far more data than can be downlinked to Earth, which reduces mission science return; this problem will be exacerbated by future rovers of enhanced capabilities and lifetimes. We are developing onboard intelligence sufficient to extract geologically meaningful data from spectrometer measurements of soil and rock samples, and thus to guide the selection, measurement and return of these data from significant targets at Mars. Here we report on techniques to construct mineral detectors capable of running on current and future rover and orbital hardware. We focus on carbonate and sulfate minerals which are of particular geologic importance because they can signal the presence of water and possibly life. Sulfates have also been discovered at the Eagle and Endurance craters in Meridiani Planum by the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) Opportunity and at other regions on Mars by the OMEGA instrument aboard Mars Express. We have developed highly accurate artificial neural network (ANN) and Support Vector Machine (SVM) based detectors capable of identifying calcite (CaCO3) and jarosite (KFe3(SO4)2(OH)6) in the visible/NIR (350-2500 nm) spectra of both laboratory specimens and rocks in Mars analogue field environments. To train the detectors, we used a generative model to create 1000s of linear mixtures of library end-member spectra in geologically realistic percentages. We have also augmented the model to include nonlinear mixing based on Hapke's models of bidirectional reflectance spectroscopy. Both detectors perform well on the spectra of real rocks that contain intimate mixtures of minerals, rocks in natural field environments, calcite covered by Mars analogue dust, and AVIRIS hyperspectral cubes. We will discuss the comparison of ANN and SVM classifiers for this task, technical challenges (weathering rinds, atmospheric compositions, and computational complexity), and plans for integration of these detectors into both the Coupled Layer

  5. Mars Rover Model Celebration: Using Planetary Exploration To Enrich STEM Teaching In Elementary And Middle School

    Bering, E. A.; Ramsey, J.; Dominey, W.; Kapral, A.; Carlson, C.; Konstantinidis, I.; James, J.; Sweaney, S.; Mendez, R.


    The present aerospace engineering and science workforce is ageing. It is not clear that the US education system will produce enough qualified replacements to meet the need in the near future. Unfortunately, by the time many students get to high school, it is often too late to get them pointed toward an engineering or science career. Since some college programs require 6 units of high school mathematics for admission, students need to begin consciously preparing for a science or engineering curriculum as early as 6th or 7th grade. The challenge for educators is to convince elementary school students that science and engineering are both exciting, relevant and accessible career paths. The recent NASA Mars Rover missions capture the imagination of children, as NASA missions have done for decades. The University of Houston is in the process of developing a prototype of a flexible program that offers children an in-depth educational experience culminating in the design and construction of their own model rover. The existing prototype program is called the Mars Rover Model Celebration. It focuses on students, teachers and parents in grades 3-8. Students will design and build a model of a Mars rover to carry out a student selected science mission on the surface of Mars. The model will be a mock-up, constructed at a minimal cost from art supplies. The students will build the models as part of a project on Mars. The students will be given design criteria for a rover and will do basic research on Mars that will determine the objectives and features of their rover. This project may be used either informally as an after school club or youth group activity or formally as part of a class studying general science, earth science, solar system astronomy or robotics, or as a multi-disciplinary unit for a gifted and talented program. The program culminates in a capstone event held at the University of Houston (or other central location in the other communities that will be involved

  6. Human-like robots for space and hazardous environments


    The three year goal for the Kansas State USRA/NASA Senior Design team is to design and build a walking autonomous robotic rover. The rover should be capable of crossing rough terrain, traversing human made obstacles (such as stairs and doors), and moving through human and robot occupied spaces without collision. The rover is also to evidence considerable decision making ability, navigation, and path planning skills.

  7. Robotic exploration of the solar system

    Ulivi, Paolo

    In Robotic Exploration of the Solar System, Paolo Ulivi and David Harland provide a comprehensive account of the design and managment of deep-space missions, the spacecraft involved - some flown, others not - their instruments, and their scientific results. This third volume in the series covers launches in the period 1997 to 2003 and features: - a chapter entirely devoted to the Cassini-Huygens mission to Saturn; - coverage of planetary missions of the period, including the Deep Space 1 mission and the Stardust and Hayabusa sample returns from comets and asteroids; - extensive coverage of Mars exploration, the failed 1999 missions, Mars Odyssey, Mars Express, and the twin rovers Spirit and Opportunity. The story will continue in Part 4.

  8. Propulsive maneuver design for the Mars Exploration Rover mission

    Potts, Christopher L.; Kangas, Julie A.; Raofi, Behzad


    Starting from approximately 150 candidate Martian landing sites, two distinct sites have been selected for further investigation by sophisticated rovers. The two rovers, named 'Spirit' and 'Opportunity', begin the surface mission respectively to Gusec Crater and Meridiani Planum in January 2004. the rovers are essentially robotic geologists, sent on a mission to research for evidence in the rocks and soil pertaining to the historical presence of water and the ability to possibly sustain life. Before this scientific search can commence, precise trajectory targeting and control is necessary to achieve the entry requirements for the selected landing sites within the constraints of the flight system. The maneuver design challenge is to meet or exceed these requirements while maintaining the necessary design flexibility to accommodate additional project concerns. Opportunities to improve performance and reduce risk based on trajectory control characteristics are also evaluated.

  9. The Preparation for and Execution of Engineering Operations for the Mars Curiosity Rover Mission

    Samuels, Jessica A.


    The Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity Rover mission is the most complex and scientifically packed rover that has ever been operated on the surface of Mars. The preparation leading up to the surface mission involved various tests, contingency planning and integration of plans between various teams and scientists for determining how operation of the spacecraft (s/c) would be facilitated. In addition, a focused set of initial set of health checks needed to be defined and created in order to ensure successful operation of rover subsystems before embarking on a two year science journey. This paper will define the role and responsibilities of the Engineering Operations team, the process involved in preparing the team for rover surface operations, the predefined engineering activities performed during the early portion of the mission, and the evaluation process used for initial and day to day spacecraft operational assessment.

  10. Low computation vision-based navigation for a Martian rover

    Gavin, Andrew S.; Brooks, Rodney A.


    Construction and design details of the Mobot Vision System, a small, self-contained, mobile vision system, are presented. This system uses the view from the top of a small, roving, robotic vehicle to supply data that is processed in real-time to safely navigate the surface of Mars. A simple, low-computation algorithm for constructing a 3-D navigational map of the Martian environment to be used by the rover is discussed.

  11. Reasoning with inaccurate spatial knowledge. [for Planetary Rover

    Doshi, Rajkumar S.; White, James E.; Lam, Raymond; Atkinson, David J.


    This paper describes work in progress on spatial planning for a semiautonomous mobile robot vehicle. The overall objective is to design a semiautonomous rover to plan routes in unknown, natural terrains. The approach to spatial planning involves deduction of common-sense spatial knowledge using geographical information, natural terrain representations, and assimilation of new and possibly conflicting terrain information. This report describes the ongoing research and implementation.

  12. Next Generation Simulation Framework for Robotic and Human Space Missions

    Cameron, Jonathan M.; Balaram, J.; Jain, Abhinandan; Kuo, Calvin; Lim, Christopher; Myint, Steven


    The Dartslab team at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) has a long history of developing physics-based simulations based on the Darts/Dshell simulation framework that have been used to simulate many planetary robotic missions, such as the Cassini spacecraft and the rovers that are currently driving on Mars. Recent collaboration efforts between the Dartslab team at JPL and the Mission Operations Directorate (MOD) at NASA Johnson Space Center (JSC) have led to significant enhancements to the Dartslab DSENDS (Dynamics Simulator for Entry, Descent and Surface landing) software framework. The new version of DSENDS is now being used for new planetary mission simulations at JPL. JSC is using DSENDS as the foundation for a suite of software known as COMPASS (Core Operations, Mission Planning, and Analysis Spacecraft Simulation) that is the basis for their new human space mission simulations and analysis. In this paper, we will describe the collaborative process with the JPL Dartslab and the JSC MOD team that resulted in the redesign and enhancement of the DSENDS software. We will outline the improvements in DSENDS that simplify creation of new high-fidelity robotic/spacecraft simulations. We will illustrate how DSENDS simulations are assembled and show results from several mission simulations.

  13. Mars Exploration Rovers Propulsive Maneuver Design

    Potts, Christopher L.; Raofi, Behzad; Kangas, Julie A.


    The Mars Exploration Rovers Spirit and Opportunity successfully landed respectively at Gusev Crater and Meridiani Planum in January 2004. The rovers are essentially robotic geologists, sent on a mission to search for evidence in the rocks and soil pertaining to the historical presence of water and the ability to possibly sustain life. In order to conduct NASA's 'follow the water' strategy on opposite sides of the planet Mars, an interplanetary journey of over 300 million miles culminated with historic navigation precision. Rigorous trajectory targeting and control was necessary to achieve the atmospheric entry requirements for the selected landing sites. The propulsive maneuver design challenge was to meet or exceed these requirements while preserving the necessary design margin to accommodate additional project concerns. Landing site flexibility was maintained for both missions after launch, and even after the first trajectory correction maneuver for Spirit. The final targeting strategy was modified to improve delivery performance and reduce risk after revealing constraining trajectory control characteristics. Flight results are examined and summarized for the six trajectory correction maneuvers that were planned for each mission.

  14. Circolo enogastronomico "Della Rovere" = The Della Rovere Club


    Della Rovere Klubist, mis on Itaalia Önogastronoomiliste Ühenduste Föderatsiooni ja Euroopa Önogastronoomia Vennaskondade Nõukogu liige ja mille missiooniks on kohalike traditsioonide säilitamine, erinevate toiduainete omaduste tutvustamine, veinikultuuri õpetamine jne

  15. Swarmie User Manual: A Rover Used for Multi-agent Swarm Research

    Montague, Gilbert


    The ability to create multiple functional yet cost effective robots is crucial for conducting swarming robotics research. The Center Innovation Fund (CIF) swarming robotics project is a collaboration among the KSC Granular Mechanics and Regolith Operations (GMRO) group, the University of New Mexico Biological Computation Lab, and the NASA Ames Intelligent Robotics Group (IRG) that uses rovers, dubbed "Swarmies", as test platforms for genetic search algorithms. This fall, I assisted in the development of the software modules used on the Swarmies and created this guide to provide thorough instructions on how to configure your workspace to operate a Swarmie both in simulation and out in the field.

  16. A Raman Spectrometer for the ExoMars 2020 Rover

    Moral, A. G.; Rull, F.; Maurice, S.; Hutchinson, I.; Canora, C. P.; Seoane, L.; Rodríguez, P.; Canchal, R.; Gallego, P.; Ramos, G.; López, G.; Prieto, J. A. R.; Santiago, A.; Santamaría, P.; Colombo, M.; Belenguer, T.; Forni, O.


    The Raman project is devoted to the development of a Raman spectrometer and the support science associated for the rover EXOMARS mission to be launched in 2020. ExoMars is a double mission with two different launch opportunities, first one launched in March 2016 allowed to put in orbit the TGO with the communication system for the next mission. And the second one in 2020, deploying a rover which includes for the first time in the robotic exploration of Mars, a drill capable to obtain samples from the subsurface up to 2 meters depth. These samples will be crushed into a fine powder and delivered to the analytical instruments suite inside the rover by means of a dosing station. The EQM has been already qualified under a very demanding thermo mechanical environment, and under EMC tests, finally achieving required scientific performances. The RLS Engineering and Qualification Model has been manufactured and is expected to be delivered by May 2017, after a full qualification testing campaign developed during 2016 Q4, and 2017 Q1. It will finally delivered to ESA, by July 2017. December 2017 at TAS-I premises will do RLS FM delivery to ESA, for its final integration on the ExoMars 2020 Rover.

  17. Estimation and Control for Autonomous Coring from a Rover Manipulator

    Hudson, Nicolas; Backes, Paul; DiCicco, Matt; Bajracharya, Max


    A system consisting of a set of estimators and autonomous behaviors has been developed which allows robust coring from a low-mass rover platform, while accommodating for moderate rover slip. A redundant set of sensors, including a force-torque sensor, visual odometry, and accelerometers are used to monitor discrete critical and operational modes, as well as to estimate continuous drill parameters during the coring process. A set of critical failure modes pertinent to shallow coring from a mobile platform is defined, and autonomous behaviors associated with each critical mode are used to maintain nominal coring conditions. Autonomous shallow coring is demonstrated from a low-mass rover using a rotary-percussive coring tool mounted on a 5 degree-of-freedom (DOF) arm. A new architecture of using an arm-stabilized, rotary percussive tool with the robotic arm used to provide the drill z-axis linear feed is validated. Particular attention to hole start using this architecture is addressed. An end-to-end coring sequence is demonstrated, where the rover autonomously detects and then recovers from a series of slip events that exceeded 9 cm total displacement.

  18. Human-Robot Interaction

    Sandor, Aniko; Cross, E. Vincent, II; Chang, Mai Lee


    Human-robot interaction (HRI) is a discipline investigating the factors affecting the interactions between humans and robots. It is important to evaluate how the design of interfaces affect the human's ability to perform tasks effectively and efficiently when working with a robot. By understanding the effects of interface design on human performance, workload, and situation awareness, interfaces can be developed to appropriately support the human in performing tasks with minimal errors and with appropriate interaction time and effort. Thus, the results of research on human-robot interfaces have direct implications for the design of robotic systems. For efficient and effective remote navigation of a rover, a human operator needs to be aware of the robot's environment. However, during teleoperation, operators may get information about the environment only through a robot's front-mounted camera causing a keyhole effect. The keyhole effect reduces situation awareness which may manifest in navigation issues such as higher number of collisions, missing critical aspects of the environment, or reduced speed. One way to compensate for the keyhole effect and the ambiguities operators experience when they teleoperate a robot is adding multiple cameras and including the robot chassis in the camera view. Augmented reality, such as overlays, can also enhance the way a person sees objects in the environment or in camera views by making them more visible. Scenes can be augmented with integrated telemetry, procedures, or map information. Furthermore, the addition of an exocentric (i.e., third-person) field of view from a camera placed in the robot's environment may provide operators with the additional information needed to gain spatial awareness of the robot. Two research studies investigated possible mitigation approaches to address the keyhole effect: 1) combining the inclusion of the robot chassis in the camera view with augmented reality overlays, and 2) modifying the camera

  19. Exomars 2018 Rover Pasteur Payload

    Debus, Andre; Bacher, M.; Ball, A.; Barcos, O.; Bethge, B.; Gaubert, F.; Haldemann, A.; Lindner, R.; Pacros, A.; Trautner, R.; Vag, J.

    ars programme is a joint ESA-NASA program having exobiology as one of the key science objectives. It is divided into 2 missions: the first mission is ESA-led with an ESA orbiter and an ESA Entry, Descent and Landing (EDL) demonstrator, launched in 2016 by NASA, and the second mission is NASA-led, launched in 2018 by NASA carrying an ESA rover and a NASA rover both deployed by a single NASA EDL system. For ESA, the ExoMars programme will demonstrate key flight and in situ enabling technologies in support of the European ambitions for future exploration missions, as outlined in the Aurora Declaration. While the ExoMars 2016 mission will accomplish a technological objective (Entry, Descent and Landing of a payload on the surface) and a Scientific objective (investigation of Martian atmospheric trace gases and their sources, focussing particularly on methane), the ExoMars 2018 ESA Rover will carry a comprehensive and coherent suite of analytical instruments dedicated to exobiology and geology research: the Pasteur Payload (PPL). This payload includes a selection of complementary instruments, having the following goals: to search for signs of past and present life on Mars and to investigate the water/geochemical environment as a function of depth in the shallow subsurface. The ExoMars Rover includes a drill for accessing underground materials, and a Sample Preparation and Distribution System. The Rover will travel several kilometres looking for sites warranting further investigation, where it will collect and analyse samples from within outcrops and from the subsurface for traces of complex organic molecules. In addition to further details on this Exomars 2018 rover mission, this presentation will focus on the scientific objectives and the instruments needed to achieve them, including details of how the Pasteur Payload as a whole addresses Mars research objectives.

  20. Human Exploration Using Real-Time Robotic Operations (HERRO)- Crew Telerobotic Control Vehicle (CTCV) Design

    Oleson, Steven R.; McGuire, Melissa L.; Burke, Laura; Chato, David; Fincannon, James; Landis, Geoff; Sandifer, Carl; Warner, Joe; Williams, Glenn; Colozza, Tony; hide


    The HERRO concept allows real time investigation of planets and small bodies by sending astronauts to orbit these targets and telerobotically explore them using robotic systems. Several targets have been put forward by past studies including Mars, Venus, and near Earth asteroids. A conceptual design study was funded by the NASA Innovation Fund to explore what the HERRO concept and it's vehicles would look like and what technological challenges need to be met. This design study chose Mars as the target destination. In this way the HERRO studies can define the endpoint design concepts for an all-up telerobotic exploration of the number one target of interest Mars. This endpoint design will serve to help planners define combined precursor telerobotics science missions and technology development flights. A suggested set of these technologies and demonstrator missions is shown in Appendix B. The HERRO concept includes a crewed telerobotics orbit vehicle as well three Truck rovers, each supporting two teleoperated geologist robots Rockhounds (each truck/Rockhounds set is landed using a commercially launched aeroshell landing system.) Options include a sample ascent system teamed with an orbital telerobotic sample rendezvous and return spacecraft (S/C) (yet to be designed). Each truck rover would be landed in a science location with the ability to traverse a 100 km diameter area, carrying the Rockhounds to 100 m diameter science areas for several week science activities. The truck is not only responsible for transporting the Rockhounds to science areas, but also for relaying telecontrol and high-res communications to/from the Rockhound and powering/heating the Rockhound during the non-science times (including night-time). The Rockhounds take the place of human geologists by providing an agile robotic platform with real-time telerobotics control to the Rockhound from the crew telerobotics orbiter. The designs of the Truck rovers and Rockhounds will be described in other

  1. Toward autonomous spacecraft

    Fogel, L. J.; Calabrese, P. G.; Walsh, M. J.; Owens, A. J.


    Ways in which autonomous behavior of spacecraft can be extended to treat situations wherein a closed loop control by a human may not be appropriate or even possible are explored. Predictive models that minimize mean least squared error and arbitrary cost functions are discussed. A methodology for extracting cyclic components for an arbitrary environment with respect to usual and arbitrary criteria is developed. An approach to prediction and control based on evolutionary programming is outlined. A computer program capable of predicting time series is presented. A design of a control system for a robotic dense with partially unknown physical properties is presented.

  2. Anytime Summarization for Remote Robot Operations, Phase I

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — NASA plans to use intelligent planetary rovers to improve the productivity and safety of human explorers. A key challenge in using robots to support human...

  3. Anytime Summarization for Remote Robot Operations, Phase II

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — NASA plans to use intelligent planetary rovers to improve the productivity and safety of human explorers. A key challenge in using robots for human exploration is...

  4. 2D/3D Visual Tracker for Rover Mast

    Bajracharya, Max; Madison, Richard W.; Nesnas, Issa A.; Bandari, Esfandiar; Kunz, Clayton; Deans, Matt; Bualat, Maria


    A visual-tracker computer program controls an articulated mast on a Mars rover to keep a designated feature (a target) in view while the rover drives toward the target, avoiding obstacles. Several prior visual-tracker programs have been tested on rover platforms; most require very small and well-estimated motion between consecutive image frames a requirement that is not realistic for a rover on rough terrain. The present visual-tracker program is designed to handle large image motions that lead to significant changes in feature geometry and photometry between frames. When a point is selected in one of the images acquired from stereoscopic cameras on the mast, a stereo triangulation algorithm computes a three-dimensional (3D) location for the target. As the rover moves, its body-mounted cameras feed images to a visual-odometry algorithm, which tracks two-dimensional (2D) corner features and computes their old and new 3D locations. The algorithm rejects points, the 3D motions of which are inconsistent with a rigid-world constraint, and then computes the apparent change in the rover pose (i.e., translation and rotation). The mast pan and tilt angles needed to keep the target centered in the field-of-view of the cameras (thereby minimizing the area over which the 2D-tracking algorithm must operate) are computed from the estimated change in the rover pose, the 3D position of the target feature, and a model of kinematics of the mast. If the motion between the consecutive frames is still large (i.e., 3D tracking was unsuccessful), an adaptive view-based matching technique is applied to the new image. This technique uses correlation-based template matching, in which a feature template is scaled by the ratio between the depth in the original template and the depth of pixels in the new image. This is repeated over the entire search window and the best correlation results indicate the appropriate match. The program could be a core for building application programs for systems

  5. Magnetically Attached Multifunction Maintenance Rover

    Bar-Cohen, Yoseph; Joffe, Benjamin


    A versatile mobile telerobot, denoted the magnetically attached multifunction maintenance rover (MAGMER), has been proposed for use in the inspection and maintenance of the surfaces of ships, tanks containing petrochemicals, and other large ferromagnetic structures. As its name suggests, this robot would utilize magnetic attraction to adhere to a structure. As it moved along the surface of the structure, the MAGMER would perform tasks that could include close-up visual inspection by use of video cameras, various sensors, and/or removal of paint by water-jet blasting, laser heating, or induction heating. The water-jet nozzles would be mounted coaxially within compressed-air-powered venturi nozzles that would collect the paint debris dislodged by the jets. The MAGMER would be deployed, powered, and controlled from a truck, to which it would be connected by hoses for water, compressed air, and collection of debris and by cables for electric power and communication (see Figure 1). The operation of the MAGMER on a typical large structure would necessitate the use of long cables and hoses, which can be heavy. To reduce the load of the hoses and cables on the MAGMER and thereby ensure its ability to adhere to vertical and overhanging surfaces, the hoses and cables would be paid out through telescopic booms that would be parts of a MAGMER support system. The MAGMER would move by use of four motorized, steerable wheels, each of which would be mounted in an assembly that would include permanent magnets and four pole pieces (see Figure 2). The wheels would protrude from between the pole pieces by only about 3 mm, so that the gap between the pole pieces and the ferromagnetic surface would be just large enough to permit motion along the surface but not so large as to reduce the magnetic attraction excessively. In addition to the wheel assemblies, the MAGMER would include magnetic adherence enhancement fixtures, which would comprise arrays of permanent magnets and pole pieces

  6. Mars Science Laboratory Rover System Thermal Test

    Novak, Keith S.; Kempenaar, Joshua E.; Liu, Yuanming; Bhandari, Pradeep; Dudik, Brenda A.


    On November 26, 2011, NASA launched a large (900 kg) rover as part of the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) mission to Mars. The MSL rover is scheduled to land on Mars on August 5, 2012. Prior to launch, the Rover was successfully operated in simulated mission extreme environments during a 16-day long Rover System Thermal Test (STT). This paper describes the MSL Rover STT, test planning, test execution, test results, thermal model correlation and flight predictions. The rover was tested in the JPL 25-Foot Diameter Space Simulator Facility at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL). The Rover operated in simulated Cruise (vacuum) and Mars Surface environments (8 Torr nitrogen gas) with mission extreme hot and cold boundary conditions. A Xenon lamp solar simulator was used to impose simulated solar loads on the rover during a bounding hot case and during a simulated Mars diurnal test case. All thermal hardware was exercised and performed nominally. The Rover Heat Rejection System, a liquid-phase fluid loop used to transport heat in and out of the electronics boxes inside the rover chassis, performed better than predicted. Steady state and transient data were collected to allow correlation of analytical thermal models. These thermal models were subsequently used to predict rover thermal performance for the MSL Gale Crater landing site. Models predict that critical hardware temperatures will be maintained within allowable flight limits over the entire 669 Sol surface mission.

  7. Cross-Coupled Control for All-Terrain Rovers

    Giulio Reina


    Full Text Available Mobile robots are increasingly being used in challenging outdoor environments for applications that include construction, mining, agriculture, military and planetary exploration. In order to accomplish the planned task, it is critical that the motion control system ensure accuracy and robustness. The achievement of high performance on rough terrain is tightly connected with the minimization of vehicle-terrain dynamics effects such as slipping and skidding. This paper presents a cross-coupled controller for a 4-wheel-drive/4-wheel-steer robot, which optimizes the wheel motors’ control algorithm to reduce synchronization errors that would otherwise result in wheel slip with conventional controllers. Experimental results, obtained with an all-terrain rover operating on agricultural terrain, are presented to validate the system. It is shown that the proposed approach is effective in reducing slippage and vehicle posture errors.

  8. APXS on board Chandrayaan-2 Rover

    Shanmugam, M.; Sripada, V. S. Murty; Acharya, Y. B.; Goyal, S. K.


    Alpha Particle X-ray Spectrometer (APXS) is a well proven instrument for quantitative in situ elemental analysis of the planetary surfaces and has been successfully employed for Mars surface exploration. Chandrayaan-2, ISRO's second lunar mission having an Orbiter, Lander and Rover has provided an opportunity to explore the lunar surface with superior detectors such as Silicon Drift Detector (SDD) with energy resolution of about 150eV @ 5.9keV. The objective of the APXS instrument is to analyse several soil/rock samples along the rover traverse for the major elements with characteristic X-rays in 1 to 25keV range. The working principle of APXS involves measuring the intensity of characteristic X-rays emitted from the sample due to Alpha Particle Induced X-ray Emission (PIXE) and X-ray florescence (XRF) processes using suitable radioactive sources, allowing the determination of elements from Na to Br, spanning the energy range of 0.9 to 16keV. For this experiment ^{244}Cm radioactive source has been chosen which emits both Alpha particles (5.8MeV) and X-rays (14.1keV, 18keV). APXS uses six Alpha sources, each about 5mCi activity. Unlike Mars, lunar environment poses additional challenges due to the regolith and extreme surface temperature changes, to operate the APXS. Our APXS instrument consists of two packages namely APXS sensor head and APXS signal electronics. The sensor head assembly contains SDD, six alpha sources and front end electronic circuits such as preamplifier and shaper circuits and will be mounted on a robotic arm which on command brings the sensor head close to the lunar surface at a height of 35±10mm. SDD module to be used in the experiment has 30mm ^{2} active detector area with in-built peltier cooler and heat sink to maintain the detector at about -35°C. The detector is covered with 8 micron thick Be window which results in the low energy threshold of about 1keV. The size of the APXS sensor head is 70x70x70mm ^{3} (approx). APXS signal

  9. Mars Exploration Rovers Landing Dispersion Analysis

    Knocke, Philip C.; Wawrzyniak, Geoffrey G.; Kennedy, Brian M.; Desai, Prasun N.; Parker, TImothy J.; Golombek, Matthew P.; Duxbury, Thomas C.; Kass, David M.


    Landing dispersion estimates for the Mars Exploration Rover missions were key elements in the site targeting process and in the evaluation of landing risk. This paper addresses the process and results of the landing dispersion analyses performed for both Spirit and Opportunity. The several contributors to landing dispersions (navigation and atmospheric uncertainties, spacecraft modeling, winds, and margins) are discussed, as are the analysis tools used. JPL's MarsLS program, a MATLAB-based landing dispersion visualization and statistical analysis tool, was used to calculate the probability of landing within hazardous areas. By convolving this with the probability of landing within flight system limits (in-spec landing) for each hazard area, a single overall measure of landing risk was calculated for each landing ellipse. In-spec probability contours were also generated, allowing a more synoptic view of site risks, illustrating the sensitivity to changes in landing location, and quantifying the possible consequences of anomalies such as incomplete maneuvers. Data and products required to support these analyses are described, including the landing footprints calculated by NASA Langley's POST program and JPL's AEPL program, cartographically registered base maps and hazard maps, and flight system estimates of in-spec landing probabilities for each hazard terrain type. Various factors encountered during operations, including evolving navigation estimates and changing atmospheric models, are discussed and final landing points are compared with approach estimates.

  10. Frost on Mars Rover Opportunity


    Frost can form on surfaces if enough water is present and the temperature is sufficiently low. On each of NASA's Mars Exploration Rovers, the calibration target for the panoramic camera provides a good place to look for such events. A thin frost was observed by Opportunity's panoramic camera on the rover's 257th sol (Oct. 13, 2004) 11 minutes after sunrise (left image). The presence of the frost is most clearly seen on the post in the center of the target, particularly when compared with the unsegmented outer ring of the target, which is white. The post is normally black. For comparison, note the difference in appearance in the image on the right, taken about three hours later, after the frost had dissipated. Frost has not been observed at Spirit, where the amount of atmospheric water vapor is observed to be appreciably lower. Both images were taken through a filter centered at a wavelength of 440 nanometers (blue).

  11. a Performance Comparison of Feature Detectors for Planetary Rover Mapping and Localization

    Wan, W.; Peng, M.; Xing, Y.; Wang, Y.; Liu, Z.; Di, K.; Teng, B.; Mao, X.; Zhao, Q.; Xin, X.; Jia, M.


    Feature detection and matching are key techniques in computer vision and robotics, and have been successfully implemented in many fields. So far there is no performance comparison of feature detectors and matching methods for planetary mapping and rover localization using rover stereo images. In this research, we present a comprehensive evaluation and comparison of six feature detectors, including Moravec, Förstner, Harris, FAST, SIFT and SURF, aiming for optimal implementation of feature-based matching in planetary surface environment. To facilitate quantitative analysis, a series of evaluation criteria, including distribution evenness of matched points, coverage of detected points, and feature matching accuracy, are developed in the research. In order to perform exhaustive evaluation, stereo images, simulated under different baseline, pitch angle, and interval of adjacent rover locations, are taken as experimental data source. The comparison results show that SIFT offers the best overall performance, especially it is less sensitive to changes of image taken at adjacent locations.


    W. Wan


    Full Text Available Feature detection and matching are key techniques in computer vision and robotics, and have been successfully implemented in many fields. So far there is no performance comparison of feature detectors and matching methods for planetary mapping and rover localization using rover stereo images. In this research, we present a comprehensive evaluation and comparison of six feature detectors, including Moravec, Förstner, Harris, FAST, SIFT and SURF, aiming for optimal implementation of feature-based matching in planetary surface environment. To facilitate quantitative analysis, a series of evaluation criteria, including distribution evenness of matched points, coverage of detected points, and feature matching accuracy, are developed in the research. In order to perform exhaustive evaluation, stereo images, simulated under different baseline, pitch angle, and interval of adjacent rover locations, are taken as experimental data source. The comparison results show that SIFT offers the best overall performance, especially it is less sensitive to changes of image taken at adjacent locations.

  13. Spacecraft Thermal Management

    Hurlbert, Kathryn Miller


    In the 21st century, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), the Russian Federal Space Agency, the National Space Agency of Ukraine, the China National Space Administration, and many other organizations representing spacefaring nations shall continue or newly implement robust space programs. Additionally, business corporations are pursuing commercialization of space for enabling space tourism and capital business ventures. Future space missions are likely to include orbiting satellites, orbiting platforms, space stations, interplanetary vehicles, planetary surface missions, and planetary research probes. Many of these missions will include humans to conduct research for scientific and terrestrial benefits and for space tourism, and this century will therefore establish a permanent human presence beyond Earth s confines. Other missions will not include humans, but will be autonomous (e.g., satellites, robotic exploration), and will also serve to support the goals of exploring space and providing benefits to Earth s populace. This section focuses on thermal management systems for human space exploration, although the guiding principles can be applied to unmanned space vehicles as well. All spacecraft require a thermal management system to maintain a tolerable thermal environment for the spacecraft crew and/or equipment. The requirements for human rating and the specified controlled temperature range (approximately 275 K - 310 K) for crewed spacecraft are unique, and key design criteria stem from overall vehicle and operational/programatic considerations. These criteria include high reliability, low mass, minimal power requirements, low development and operational costs, and high confidence for mission success and safety. This section describes the four major subsystems for crewed spacecraft thermal management systems, and design considerations for each. Additionally, some examples of specialized or advanced thermal system technologies are presented

  14. Novel Methodology for Control and Stabilization of Spacecraft with Captured Asteroid

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Development of novel spacecraft guidance control architectures and algorithms that work in conjunction with robot manipulator control for application to ARM mission...

  15. The real-time control of planetary rovers through behavior modification

    Miller, David P.


    It is not yet clear of what type, and how much, intelligence is needed for a planetary rover to function semi-autonomously on a planetary surface. Current designs assume an advanced AI system that maintains a detailed map of its journeys and the surroundings, and that carefully calculates and tests every move in advance. To achieve these abilities, and because of the limitations of space-qualified electronics, the supporting rover is quite sizable, massing a large fraction of a ton, and requiring technology advances in everything from power to ground operations. An alternative approach is to use a behavior driven control scheme. Recent research has shown that many complex tasks may be achieved by programming a robot with a set of behaviors and activation or deactivating a subset of those behaviors as required by the specific situation in which the robot finds itself. Behavior control requires much less computation than is required by tradition AI planning techniques. The reduced computation requirements allows the entire rover to be scaled down as appropriate (only down-link communications and payload do not scale under these circumstances). The missions that can be handled by the real-time control and operation of a set of small, semi-autonomous, interacting, behavior-controlled planetary rovers are discussed.

  16. Martian methane plume models for defining Mars rover methane source search strategies

    Nicol, Christopher; Ellery, Alex; Lynch, Brian; Cloutis, Ed


    The detection of atmospheric methane on Mars implies an active methane source. This introduces the possibility of a biotic source with the implied need to determine whether the methane is indeed biotic in nature or geologically generated. There is a clear need for robotic algorithms which are capable of manoeuvring a rover through a methane plume on Mars to locate its source. We explore aspects of Mars methane plume modelling to reveal complex dynamics characterized by advection and diffusion. A statistical analysis of the plume model has been performed and compared to analyses of terrestrial plume models. Finally, we consider a robotic search strategy to find a methane plume source. We find that gradient-based techniques are ineffective, but that more sophisticated model-based search strategies are unlikely to be available in near-term rover missions.

  17. A Polar Rover for Large-Scale Scientific Surveys: Design, Implementation and Field Test Results

    Yuqing He


    Full Text Available Exploration of polar regions is of great importance to scientific research. Unfortunately, due to the harsh environment, most of the regions on the Antarctic continent are still unreachable for humankind. Therefore, in 2011, the Chinese National Antarctic Research Expedition (CHINARE launched a project to design a rover to conduct large-scale scientific surveys on the Antarctic. The main challenges for the rover are twofold: one is the mobility, i.e., how to make a rover that could survive the harsh environment and safely move on the uneven, icy and snowy terrain; the other is the autonomy, in that the robot should be able to move at a relatively high speed with little or no human intervention so that it can explore a large region in a limit time interval under the communication constraints. In this paper, the corresponding techniques, especially the polar rover's design and autonomous navigation algorithms, are introduced in detail. Subsequently, an experimental report of the fields tests on the Antarctic is given to show some preliminary evaluation of the rover. Finally, experiences and existing challenging problems are summarized.

  18. Design of Mobility System for Ground Model of Planetary Exploration Rover

    Younkyu Kim


    Full Text Available In recent years, a number of missions have been planned and conducted worldwide on the planets such as Mars, which involves the unmanned robotic exploration with the use of rover. The rover is an important system for unmanned planetary exploration, performing the locomotion and sample collection and analysis at the exploration target of the planetary surface designated by the operator. This study investigates the development of mobility system for the rover ground model necessary to the planetary surface exploration for the benefit of future planetary exploration mission in Korea. First, the requirements for the rover mobility system are summarized and a new mechanism is proposed for a stable performance on rough terrain which consists of the passive suspension system with 8 wheeled double 4-bar linkage (DFBL, followed by the performance evaluation for the mechanism of the mobility system based on the shape design and simulation. The proposed mobility system DFBL was compared with the Rocker-Bogie suspension system of US space agency National Aeronautics and Space Administration and 8 wheeled mobility system CRAB8 developed in Switzerland, using the simulation to demonstrate the superiority with respect to the stability of locomotion. On the basis of the simulation results, a general system configuration was proposed and designed for the rover manufacture.

  19. Accessing Information on the Mars Exploration Rovers Mission

    Walton, J. D.; Schreiner, J. A.


    In January 2004, the Mars Exploration Rovers (MER) mission successfully deployed two robotic geologists - Spirit and Opportunity - to opposite sides of the red planet. Onboard each rover is an array of cameras and scientific instruments that send data back to Earth, where ground-based systems process and store the information. During the height of the mission, a team of about 250 scientists and engineers worked around the clock to analyze the collected data, determine a strategy and activities for the next day and then carefully compose the command sequences that would instruct the rovers in how to perform their tasks. The scientists and engineers had to work closely together to balance the science objectives with the engineering constraints so that the mission achieved its goals safely and quickly. To accomplish this coordinated effort, they adhered to a tightly orchestrated schedule of meetings and processes. To keep on time, it was critical that all team members were aware of what was happening, knew how much time they had to complete their tasks, and could easily access the information they need to do their jobs. Computer scientists and software engineers at NASA Ames Research Center worked closely with the mission managers at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) to create applications that support the mission. One such application, the Collaborative Information Portal (CIP), helps mission personnel perform their daily tasks, whether they work inside mission control or the science areas at JPL, or in their homes, schools, or offices. With a three-tiered, service-oriented architecture (SOA) - client, middleware, and data repository - built using Java and commercial software, CIP provides secure access to mission schedules and to data and images transmitted from the Mars rovers. This services-based approach proved highly effective for building distributed, flexible applications, and is forming the basis for the design of future mission software systems. Almost two

  20. Laser-powered Martian rover

    Harries, W. L.; Meador, W. E.; Miner, G. A.; Schuster, Gregory L.; Walker, G. H.; Williams, M. D.


    Two rover concepts were considered: an unpressurized skeleton vehicle having available 4.5 kW of electrical power and limited to a range of about 10 km from a temporary Martian base and a much larger surface exploration vehicle (SEV) operating on a maximum 75-kW power level and essentially unrestricted in range or mission. The only baseline reference system was a battery-operated skeleton vehicle with very limited mission capability and range and which would repeatedly return to its temporary base for battery recharging. It was quickly concluded that laser powering would be an uneconomical overkill for this concept. The SEV, on the other hand, is a new rover concept that is especially suited for powering by orbiting solar or electrically pumped lasers. Such vehicles are visualized as mobile habitats with full life-support systems onboard, having unlimited range over the Martian surface, and having extensive mission capability (e.g., core drilling and sampling, construction of shelters for protection from solar flares and dust storms, etc.). Laser power beaming to SEV's was shown to have the following advantages: (1) continuous energy supply by three orbiting lasers at 2000 km (no storage requirements as during Martian night with direct solar powering); (2) long-term supply without replacement; (3) very high power available (MW level possible); and (4) greatly enhanced mission enabling capability beyond anything currently conceived.

  1. International testing of a Mars rover prototype

    Kemurjian, Alexsandr Leonovich; Linkin, V.; Friedman, L.


    Tests on a prototype engineering model of the Russian Mars 96 Rover were conducted by an international team in and near Death Valley in the United States in late May, 1992. These tests were part of a comprehensive design and testing program initiated by the three Russian groups responsible for the rover development. The specific objectives of the May tests were: (1) evaluate rover performance over different Mars-like terrains; (2) evaluate state-of-the-art teleoperation and autonomy development for Mars rover command, control and navigation; and (3) organize an international team to contribute expertise and capability on the rover development for the flight project. The range and performance that can be planned for the Mars mission is dependent on the degree of autonomy that will be possible to implement on the mission. Current plans are for limited autonomy, with Earth-based teleoperation for the nominal navigation system. Several types of television systems are being investigated for inclusion in the navigation system including panoramic camera, stereo, and framing cameras. The tests used each of these in teleoperation experiments. Experiments were included to consider use of such TV data in autonomy algorithms. Image processing and some aspects of closed-loop control software were also tested. A micro-rover was tested to help consider the value of such a device as a payload supplement to the main rover. The concept is for the micro-rover to serve like a mobile hand, with its own sensors including a television camera.

  2. Exploratorium: Robots.

    Brand, Judith, Ed.


    This issue of Exploratorium Magazine focuses on the topic robotics. It explains how to make a vibrating robotic bug and features articles on robots. Contents include: (1) "Where Robot Mice and Robot Men Run Round in Robot Towns" (Ray Bradbury); (2) "Robots at Work" (Jake Widman); (3) "Make a Vibrating Robotic Bug" (Modesto Tamez); (4) "The Robot…

  3. Precision Hopping/Rolling Robotic Surface Probe Based on Tensegrity Structures

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — We propose to overcome the limitations of wheeled surface rovers by combining recent advances in ball-shaped soft-robots based on tensegrity structures (a tension...

  4. Applied design methodology for lunar rover elastic wheel

    Cardile, Diego; Viola, Nicole; Chiesa, Sergio; Rougier, Alessandro


    In recent years an increasing interest in the Moon surface operations has been experienced. In the future robotic and manned missions of Moon surface exploration will be fundamental in order to lay the groundwork for more ambitious space exploration programs. Surface mobility systems will be the key elements to ensure an efficient and safe Moon exploration. Future lunar rovers are likely to be heavier and able to travel longer distances than the previously developed Moon rover systems. The Lunar Roving Vehicle (LRV) is the only manned rover, which has so far been launched and used on the Moon surface. Its mobility system included flexible wheels that cannot be scaled to the heavier and longer range vehicles. Thus the previously developed wheels are likely not to be suitable for the new larger vehicles. Taking all these considerations into account, on the basis of the system requirements and assumptions, several wheel concepts have been discussed and evaluated through a trade-off analysis. Semi-empirical equations have been utilized to predict the wheel geometrical characteristics, as well as to estimate the motion resistances and the ability of the system to generate thrust. A numerical model has also been implemented, in order to define more into the details the whole wheel design, in terms of wheel geometry and physical properties. As a result of the trade-off analysis, the ellipse wheel concept has shown the best behavior in terms of stiffness, mass budget and dynamic performance. The results presented in the paper have been obtained in cooperation with Thales Alenia Space-Italy and Sicme motori, in the framework of a regional program called STEPS . STEPS-Sistemi e Tecnologie per l'EsPlorazione Spaziale is a research project co-financed by Piedmont Region and firms and universities of the Piedmont Aerospace District in the ambit of the P.O.R-F.E.S.R. 2007-2013 program.

  5. Spacecraft navigation at Mars using earth-based and in situ radio tracking techniques

    Thurman, S. W.; Edwards, C. D.; Kahn, R. D.; Vijayaraghavan, A.; Hastrup, R. C.; Cesarone, R. J.


    A survey of earth-based and in situ radiometric data types and results from a number of studies investigating potential radio navigation performance for spacecraft approaching/orbiting Mars and for landed spacecraft and rovers on the surface of Mars are presented. The performance of Doppler, ranging and interferometry earth-based data types involving single or multiple spacecraft is addressed. This evaluation is conducted with that of in situ data types, such as Doppler and ranging measurements between two spacecraft near Mars, or between a spacecraft and one or more surface radio beacons.

  6. Scientific Results of the Mars Exploration Rovers Spirit and Opportunity

    Banerdt, W. B.


    NASA's Mars Exploration Rover project launched two robotic geologists, Spirit and Opportunity, toward Mars in June and July of 2003, reaching Mars the following January. The science objectives for this mission are focused on delineating the geologic history for two locations on Mars, with an emphasis on the history of water. Although they were designed for a 90-day mission, both rovers have lasted more than two years on the surface and each has covered more than four miles while investigating Martian geology. Spirit was targeted to Gusev Crater, a 300-km diameter impact basin that was suspected to be the site of an ancient lake. Initial investigations of the plains in the vicinity of the landing site found no evidence of such a lake, but were instead consistent with unaltered (by water) basaltic plains. But after a 3-km trek to an adjacent range of hills it found a quite different situation, with abundant chemical and morphological evidence for a complex geological history. Opportunity has been exploring Meridiani Planum, which was known from orbital data to contain the mineral hematite, which generally forms in the presence of water. The rocks exposed in Meridiani are highly chemically altered, and appear to have been exposed to significant amounts of water. By descending into the 130-m diameter Endurance Crater, Opportunity was able to analyze a 10-m vertical section of this rock unit, which showed significant gradations in chemistry and morphology.

  7. Rover deployment system for lunar landing mission

    Sutoh, Masataku; Hoshino, Takeshi; Wakabayashi, Sachiko


    For lunar surface exploration, a deployment system is necessary to allow a rover to leave the lander. The system should be as lightweight as possible and stored retracted when launched. In this paper, two types of retractable deployment systems for lunar landing missions, telescopic- and fold-type ramps, are discussed. In the telescopic-type system, a ramp is stored with the sections overlapping and slides out during deployment. In the fold-type system, it is stored folded and unfolds for the deployment. For the development of these ramps, a design concept study and structural analysis were conducted first. Subsequently, ramp deployment and rover release tests were performed using the developed ramp prototypes. Through these tests, the validity of their design concepts and functions have been confirmed. In the rover release test, it was observed that the developed lightweight ramp was sufficiently strong for a 50-kg rover to descend. This result suggests that this ramp system is suitable for the deployment of a 300-kg-class rover on the Moon, where the gravity is about one-sixth that on Earth. The lightweight and sturdy ramp developed in this study will contribute to both safe rover deployment and increase of lander/rover payload.

  8. First results from the Mojave Volatiles Prospector (MVP) Field Campaign, a Lunar Polar Rover Mission Analog

    Heldmann, J. L.; Colaprete, A.; Cook, A.; Deans, M. C.; Elphic, R. C.; Lim, D. S. S.; Skok, J. R.


    The Mojave Volatiles Prospector (MVP) project is a science-driven field program with the goal to produce critical knowledge for conducting robotic exploration of the Moon. MVP will feed science, payload, and operational lessons learned to the development of a real-time, short-duration lunar polar volatiles prospecting mission. MVP achieves these goals through a simulated lunar rover mission to investigate the composition and distribution of surface and subsurface volatiles in a natural and a priori unknown environment within the Mojave Desert, improving our understanding of how to find, characterize, and access volatiles on the Moon. The MVP field site is the Mojave Desert, selected for its low, naturally occurring water abundance. The Mojave typically has on the order of 2-6% water, making it a suitable lunar analog for this field test. MVP uses the Near Infrared and Visible Spectrometer Subsystem (NIRVSS), Neutron Spectrometer Subsystem (NSS), and a downward facing GroundCam camera on the KREX-2 rover to investigate the relationship between the distribution of volatiles and soil crust variation. Through this investigation, we mature robotic in situ instruments and concepts of instrument operations, improve ground software tools for real time science, and carry out publishable research on the water cycle and its connection to geomorphology and mineralogy in desert environments. A lunar polar rover mission is unlike prior space missions and requires a new concept of operations. The rover must navigate 3-5 km of terrain and examine multiple sites in in just ~6 days. Operational decisions must be made in real time, requiring constant situational awareness, data analysis and rapid turnaround decision support tools. This presentation will focus on the first science results and operational architecture findings from the MVP field deployment relevant to a lunar polar rover mission.

  9. Iterative Repair Planning for Spacecraft Operations Using the Aspen System

    Rabideau, G.; Knight, R.; Chien, S.; Fukunaga, A.; Govindjee, A.


    This paper describes the Automated Scheduling and Planning Environment (ASPEN). ASPEN encodes complex spacecraft knowledge of operability constraints, flight rules, spacecraft hardware, science experiments and operations procedures to allow for automated generation of low level spacecraft sequences. Using a technique called iterative repair, ASPEN classifies constraint violations (i.e., conflicts) and attempts to repair each by performing a planning or scheduling operation. It must reason about which conflict to resolve first and what repair method to try for the given conflict. ASPEN is currently being utilized in the development of automated planner/scheduler systems for several spacecraft, including the UFO-1 naval communications satellite and the Citizen Explorer (CX1) satellite, as well as for planetary rover operations and antenna ground systems automation. This paper focuses on the algorithm and search strategies employed by ASPEN to resolve spacecraft operations constraints, as well as the data structures for representing these constraints.

  10. An Overview of Wind-Driven Rovers for Planetary Exploration

    Hajos, Gregory A.; Jones, Jack A.; Behar, Alberto; Dodd, Micheal


    The use of in-situ propulsion is considered enabling technology for long duration planetary surface missions. Most studies have focused on stored energy from chemicals extracted from the soil or the use of soil chemicals to produce photovoltaic arrays. An older form of in-situ propulsion is the use of wind power. Recent studies have shown potential for wind driven craft for exploration of Mars, Titan and Venus. The power of the wind, used for centuries to power wind mills and sailing ships, is now being applied to modern land craft. Efforts are now underway to use the wind to push exploration vehicles on other planets and moons in extended survey missions. Tumbleweed rovers are emerging as a new type of wind-driven science platform concept. Recent investigations by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) indicate that these light-weight, mostly spherical or quasi-spherical devices have potential for long distance surface exploration missions. As a power boat has unique capabilities, but relies on stored energy (fuel) to move the vessel, the Tumbleweed, like the sailing ships of the early explorers on earth, uses an unlimited resource the wind to move around the surface of Mars. This has the potential to reduce the major mass drivers of robotic rovers as well as the power generation and storage systems. Jacques Blamont of JPL and the University of Paris conceived the first documented Mars wind-blown ball in 1977, shortly after the Viking landers discovered that Mars has a thin CO2 atmosphere with relatively strong winds. In 1995, Jack Jones, et al, of JPL conceived of a large wind-blown inflated ball for Mars that could also be driven and steered by means of a motorized mass hanging beneath the rolling axis of the ball. A team at NASA Langley Research Center started a biomimetic Tumbleweed design study in 1998. Wind tunnel and CFD analysis were applied to a variety of concepts to optimize the aerodynamic

  11. Mars rover local navigation and hazard avoidance

    Wilcox, B. H.; Gennery, D. B.; Mishkin, A. H.


    A Mars rover sample return mission has been proposed for the late 1990's. Due to the long speed-of-light delays between earth and Mars, some autonomy on the rover is highly desirable. JPL has been conducting research in two possible modes of rover operation, Computer-Aided Remote Driving and Semiautonomous Navigation. A recently-completed research program used a half-scale testbed vehicle to explore several of the concepts in semiautonomous navigation. A new, full-scale vehicle with all computational and power resources on-board will be used in the coming year to demonstrate relatively fast semiautonomous navigation. The computational and power requirements for Mars rover local navigation and hazard avoidance are discussed.

  12. Electrostatic Spectrometer for Mars Rover Wheel

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Develop a simple electrostatic spectrometer that can be mounted on the wheels of a Mars rover to continuously and unobtrusively determine the mineral composition and...

  13. Robot Actors, Robot Dramaturgies

    Jochum, Elizabeth

    This paper considers the use of tele-operated robots in live performance. Robots and performance have long been linked, from the working androids and automata staged in popular exhibitions during the nineteenth century and the robots featured at Cybernetic Serendipity (1968) and the World Expo...

  14. Robotic architectures

    Mtshali, M


    Full Text Available In the development of mobile robotic systems, a robotic architecture plays a crucial role in interconnecting all the sub-systems and controlling the system. The design of robotic architectures for mobile autonomous robots is a challenging...

  15. Robotic Technology Efforts at the NASA/Johnson Space Center

    Diftler, Ron


    The NASA/Johnson Space Center has been developing robotic systems in support of space exploration for more than two decades. The goal of the Center’s Robotic Systems Technology Branch is to design and build hardware and software to assist astronauts in performing their mission. These systems include: rovers, humanoid robots, inspection devices and wearable robotics. Inspection systems provide external views of space vehicles to search for surface damage and also maneuver inside restricted areas to verify proper connections. New concepts in human and robotic rovers offer solutions for navigating difficult terrain expected in future planetary missions. An important objective for humanoid robots is to relieve the crew of “dull, dirty or dangerous” tasks allowing them more time to perform their important science and exploration missions. Wearable robotics one of the Center’s newest development areas can provide crew with low mass exercise capability and also augment an astronaut’s strength while wearing a space suit.This presentation will describe the robotic technology and prototypes developed at the Johnson Space Center that are the basis for future flight systems. An overview of inspection robots will show their operation on the ground and in-orbit. Rovers with independent wheel modules, crab steering, and active suspension are able to climb over large obstacles, and nimbly maneuver around others. Humanoid robots, including the First Humanoid Robot in Space: Robonaut 2, demonstrate capabilities that will lead to robotic caretakers for human habitats in space, and on Mars. The Center’s Wearable Robotics Lab supports work in assistive and sensing devices, including exoskeletons, force measuring shoes, and grasp assist gloves.

  16. Using Planning, Scheduling and Execution for Autonomous Mars Rover Operations

    Estlin, Tara A.; Gaines, Daniel M.; Chouinard, Caroline M.; Fisher, Forest W.; Castano, Rebecca; Judd, Michele J.; Nesnas, Issa A.


    With each new rover mission to Mars, rovers are traveling significantly longer distances. This distance increase raises not only the opportunities for science data collection, but also amplifies the amount of environment and rover state uncertainty that must be handled in rover operations. This paper describes how planning, scheduling and execution techniques can be used onboard a rover to autonomously generate and execute rover activities and in particular to handle new science opportunities that have been identified dynamically. We also discuss some of the particular challenges we face in supporting autonomous rover decision-making. These include interaction with rover navigation and path-planning software and handling large amounts of uncertainty in state and resource estimations. Finally, we describe our experiences in testing this work using several Mars rover prototypes in a realistic environment.

  17. Brake Failure from Residual Magnetism in the Mars Exploration Rover Lander Petal Actuator

    Jandura, Louise


    In January 2004, two Mars Exploration Rover spacecraft arrived at Mars. Each safely delivered an identical rover to the Martian surface in a tetrahedral lander encased in airbags. Upon landing, the airbags deflated and three Lander Petal Actuators opened the three deployable Lander side petals enabling the rover to exit the Lander. Approximately nine weeks prior to the scheduled launch of the first spacecraft, one of these mission-critical Lander Petal Actuators exhibited a brake stuck-open failure during its final flight stow at Kennedy Space Center. Residual magnetism was the definitive conclusion from the failure investigation. Although residual magnetism was recognized as an issue in the design, the lack of an appropriately specified lower bound on brake drop-out voltage inhibited the discovery of this problem earlier in the program. In addition, the brakes had more unit-to-unit variation in drop-out voltage than expected, likely due to a larger than expected variation in the magnetic properties of the 15-5 PH stainless steel brake plates. Failure analysis and subsequent rework of two other Lander Petal Actuators with marginal brakes was completed in three weeks, causing no impact to the launch date.

  18. Automated constraint checking of spacecraft command sequences

    Horvath, Joan C.; Alkalaj, Leon J.; Schneider, Karl M.; Spitale, Joseph M.; Le, Dang


    Robotic spacecraft are controlled by onboard sets of commands called "sequences." Determining that sequences will have the desired effect on the spacecraft can be expensive in terms of both labor and computer coding time, with different particular costs for different types of spacecraft. Specification languages and appropriate user interface to the languages can be used to make the most effective use of engineering validation time. This paper describes one specification and verification environment ("SAVE") designed for validating that command sequences have not violated any flight rules. This SAVE system was subsequently adapted for flight use on the TOPEX/Poseidon spacecraft. The relationship of this work to rule-based artificial intelligence and to other specification techniques is discussed, as well as the issues that arise in the transfer of technology from a research prototype to a full flight system.

  19. Robotics Algorithms Provide Nutritional Guidelines


    On July 5, 1997, a small robot emerged from its lander like an insect from an egg, crawling out onto the rocky surface of Mars. About the size of a child s wagon, NASA s Sojourner robot was the first successful rover mission to the Red Planet. For 83 sols (Martian days, typically about 40 minutes longer than Earth days), Sojourner - largely remote controlled by NASA operators on Earth - transmitted photos and data unlike any previously collected. Sojourner was perhaps the crowning achievement of the NASA Space Telerobotics Program, an Agency initiative designed to push the limits of robotics in space. Telerobotics - devices that merge the autonomy of robotics with the direct human control of teleoperators - was already a part of NASA s efforts; probes like the Viking landers that preceded Sojourner on Mars, for example, were telerobotic applications. The Space Telerobotics Program, a collaboration between Ames Research Center, Johnson Space Center, Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), and multiple universities, focused on developing remote-controlled robotics for three main purposes: on-orbit assembly and servicing, science payload tending, and planetary surface robotics. The overarching goal was to create robots that could be guided to build structures in space, monitor scientific experiments, and, like Sojourner, scout distant planets in advance of human explorers. While telerobotics remains a significant aspect of NASA s efforts, as evidenced by the currently operating Spirit and Opportunity Mars rovers, the Hubble Space Telescope, and many others - the Space Telerobotics Program was dissolved and redistributed within the Agency the same year as Sojourner s success. The program produced a host of remarkable technologies and surprising inspirations, including one that is changing the way people eat

  20. The design and engineering of curiosity how the Mars Rover performs its job

    Lakdawalla, Emily


    This book describes the most complex machine ever sent to another planet: Curiosity. It is a one-ton robot with two brains, seventeen cameras, six wheels, nuclear power, and a laser beam on its head. No one human understands how all of its systems and instruments work. This essential reference to the Curiosity mission explains the engineering behind every system on the rover, from its rocket-powered jetpack to its radioisotope thermoelectric generator to its fiendishly complex sample handling system. Its lavishly illustrated text explains how all the instruments work -- its cameras, spectrometers, sample-cooking oven, and weather station -- and describes the instruments' abilities and limitations. It tells you how the systems have functioned on Mars, and how scientists and engineers have worked around problems developed on a faraway planet: holey wheels and broken focus lasers. And it explains the grueling mission operations schedule that keeps the rover working day in and day out.   .

  1. Curiosity rover LEGO® version could land soon

    Showstack, Randy


    Now that NASA's Curiosity rover has landed on Mars, a smaller LEGO® plastic brick construction version could be landing in toy stores. Less than 2 weeks after Curiosity set down on 5 August, a LEGO® set concept model designed by a mechanical and aerospace engineer who worked on the real rover garnered its 10,000th supporter on the Web site of CUUSOO, a Japanese partner of the LEGO® group. That milestone triggered a company review that began in September 2012 to test the model's “playability, safety, and ft with the LEGO® brand,” according to a congratulatory statement from the company to designer Stephen Pakbaz. Pakbaz told Eos that he has been an avid LEGO® and space exploration fan for most of his life. “For me, creating a LEGO® model of Curiosity using my firsthand knowledge of the rover was inevitable. What I enjoyed most was being able to faithfully replicate and subsequently demonstrate the rocker-bogie suspension system to friends, family, and coworkers,” he noted, referring to the suspension system that allows the rover to climb over obstacles while keeping its wheels on the ground. Pakbaz, who is currently with Orbital Sciences Corporation, was involved with aspects of the rover while working at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory from 2007 to 2011 as a mechanical engineer.

  2. Spacecraft radiator systems

    Anderson, Grant A. (Inventor)


    A spacecraft radiator system designed to provide structural support to the spacecraft. Structural support is provided by the geometric "crescent" form of the panels of the spacecraft radiator. This integration of radiator and structural support provides spacecraft with a semi-monocoque design.

  3. Service Oriented Robotic Architecture for Space Robotics: Design, Testing, and Lessons Learned

    Fluckiger, Lorenzo Jean Marc E; Utz, Hans Heinrich


    This paper presents the lessons learned from six years of experiments with planetary rover prototypes running the Service Oriented Robotic Architecture (SORA) developed by the Intelligent Robotics Group (IRG) at the NASA Ames Research Center. SORA relies on proven software engineering methods and technologies applied to space robotics. Based on a Service Oriented Architecture and robust middleware, SORA encompasses on-board robot control and a full suite of software tools necessary for remotely operated exploration missions. SORA has been eld tested in numerous scenarios of robotic lunar and planetary exploration. The experiments conducted by IRG with SORA exercise a large set of the constraints encountered in space applications: remote robotic assets, ight relevant science instruments, distributed operations, high network latencies and unreliable or intermittent communication links. In this paper, we present the results of these eld tests in regard to the developed architecture, and discuss its bene ts and limitations.

  4. Robot engineering

    Jung, Seul


    This book deals with robot engineering, giving descriptions of robot's history, current tendency of robot field, work and characteristic of industrial robot, essential merit and vector, application of matrix, analysis of basic vector, expression of Denavit-Hartenberg, robot kinematics such as forward kinematics, inverse kinematics, cases of MATLAB program, and motion kinematics, robot kinetics like moment of inertia, centrifugal force and coriolis power, and Euler-Lagrangian equation course plan, SIMULINK position control of robots.

  5. Robot engineering

    Jung, Seul


    This book deals with robot engineering, giving descriptions of robot's history, current tendency of robot field, work and characteristic of industrial robot, essential merit and vector, application of matrix, analysis of basic vector, expression of Denavit-Hartenberg, robot kinematics such as forward kinematics, inverse kinematics, cases of MATLAB program, and motion kinematics, robot kinetics like moment of inertia, centrifugal force and coriolis power, and Euler-Lagrangian equation course plan, SIMULINK position control of robots.

  6. Mars Exploration Rover Heat Shield Recontact Analysis

    Raiszadeh, Behzad; Desai, Prasun N.; Michelltree, Robert


    The twin Mars Exploration Rover missions landed successfully on Mars surface in January of 2004. Both missions used a parachute system to slow the rover s descent rate from supersonic to subsonic speeds. Shortly after parachute deployment, the heat shield, which protected the rover during the hypersonic entry phase of the mission, was jettisoned using push-off springs. Mission designers were concerned about the heat shield recontacting the lander after separation, so a separation analysis was conducted to quantify risks. This analysis was used to choose a proper heat shield ballast mass to ensure successful separation with low probability of recontact. This paper presents the details of such an analysis, its assumptions, and the results. During both landings, the radar was able to lock on to the heat shield, measuring its distance, as it descended away from the lander. This data is presented and is used to validate the heat shield separation/recontact analysis.

  7. Exomars 2018 Rover Pasteur Payload Sample Analysis

    Debus, Andre; Bacher, M.; Ball, A.; Barcos, O.; Bethge, B.; Gaubert, F.; Haldemann, A.; Kminek, G.; Lindner, R.; Pacros, A.; Rohr, T.; Trautner, R.; Vago, J.

    The ExoMars programme is a joint ESA-NASA program having exobiology as one of the key science objectives. It is divided into 2 missions: the first mission is ESA-led with an ESA orbiter and an ESA Entry, Descent and Landing (EDL) demonstrator, launched in 2016 by NASA, and the second mission is NASA-led, launched in 2018 by NASA including an ESA rover and a NASA rover both deployed by a single NASA EDL system. For ESA, the ExoMars programme will demonstrate key flight and in situ enabling technologies in support of the European ambitions for future exploration missions, as outlined in the Aurora Declaration. The ExoMars 2018 ESA Rover will carry a comprehensive and coherent suite of analytical instruments dedicated to exobiology and geology research: the Pasteur Payload (PPL). This payload includes a selection of complementary instruments, having the following goals: to search for signs of past and present life on Mars and to investigate the water/geochemical environment as a function of depth in the shallow subsurface. The ExoMars Rover will travel several kilometres searching for sites warranting further investigation. The Rover includes a drill and a Sample Preparation and Distribution System which will be used to collect and analyse samples from within outcrops and from the subsurface. The Rover systems and instruments, in particular those located inside the Analytical Laboratory Drawer must meet many stringent requirements to be compatible with exobiologic investigations: the samples must be maintained in a cold and uncontaminated environment, requiring sterile and ultraclean preparation of the instruments, to preserve volatile materials and to avoid false positive results. The value of the coordinated observations suggests that a significant return on investment is to be expected from this complex development. We will present the challenges facing the ExoMars PPL, and the plans for sending a robust exobiology laboratory to Mars in 2018.

  8. Adaptive Behavior for Mobile Robots

    Huntsberger, Terrance


    The term "System for Mobility and Access to Rough Terrain" (SMART) denotes a theoretical framework, a control architecture, and an algorithm that implements the framework and architecture, for enabling a land-mobile robot to adapt to changing conditions. SMART is intended to enable the robot to recognize adverse terrain conditions beyond its optimal operational envelope, and, in response, to intelligently reconfigure itself (e.g., adjust suspension heights or baseline distances between suspension points) or adapt its driving techniques (e.g., engage in a crabbing motion as a switchback technique for ascending steep terrain). Conceived for original application aboard Mars rovers and similar autonomous or semi-autonomous mobile robots used in exploration of remote planets, SMART could also be applied to autonomous terrestrial vehicles to be used for search, rescue, and/or exploration on rough terrain.

  9. Recent Accomplishments in Mars Exploration: The Rover Perspective

    McLennan, S. M.; McSween, H. Y.


    Mobile rovers have revolutionized our understanding of Mars geology by identifying habitable environments and addressing critical questions related to Mars science. Both the advances and limitations of rovers set the scene for Mars Sample Return.

  10. Real‐Time Measurement of Wheel Performance on a Rover

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Wind-blown sand on Mars produces a high risk of entrapment for Mars rovers. This was evident when the Mars Exploration Rover Spirit was immobilized in a wind blown...

  11. The Curiosity Mars Rover's Fault Protection Engine

    Benowitz, Ed


    The Curiosity Rover, currently operating on Mars, contains flight software onboard to autonomously handle aspects of system fault protection. Over 1000 monitors and 39 responses are present in the flight software. Orchestrating these behaviors is the flight software's fault protection engine. In this paper, we discuss the engine's design, responsibilities, and present some lessons learned for future missions.

  12. Comparative Field Tests of Pressurised Rover Prototypes

    Mann, G. A.; Wood, N. B.; Clarke, J. D.; Piechochinski, S.; Bamsey, M.; Laing, J. H.

    The conceptual designs, interior layouts and operational performances of three pressurised rover prototypes - Aonia, ARES and Everest - were field tested during a recent simulation at the Mars Desert Research Station in Utah. A human factors experiment, in which the same crew of three executed the same simulated science mission in each of the three vehicles, yielded comparative data on the capacity of each vehicle to safely and comfortably carry explorers away from the main base, enter and exit the vehicle in spacesuits, perform science tasks in the field, and manage geological and biological samples. As well as offering recommendations for design improvements for specific vehicles, the results suggest that a conventional Sports Utility Vehicle (SUV) would not be suitable for analog field work; that a pressurised docking tunnel to the main habitat is essential; that better provisions for spacesuit storage are required; and that a crew consisting of one driver/navigator and two field science crew specialists may be optimal. From a field operations viewpoint, a recurring conflict between rover and habitat crews at the time of return to the habitat was observed. An analysis of these incidents leads to proposed refinements of operational protocols, specific crew training for rover returns and again points to the need for a pressurised docking tunnel. Sound field testing, circulating of results, and building the lessons learned into new vehicles is advocated as a way of producing ever higher fidelity rover analogues.

  13. A Mars orbiter/rover/penetrator mission for the 1984 opportunity

    Hastrup, R.; Driver, J.; Nagorski, R.


    A point design mission is described that utilizes the 1984 opportunity to extend the exploration of Mars after the successful Viking operations and provide the additional scientific information needed before conducting a sample return mission. Two identical multi-element spacecraft are employed, each consisting of (1) an orbiter, (2) a Viking-derived landing system that delivers a heavily instrumented, semi-autonomous rover, and (3) three penetrators deployed from the approach trajectory. Selection of the orbit profiles requires consideration of several important factors in order to satisfy all of the mission goals.

  14. Measuring planetary field parameters by scattered "SSSS" from the Husar-5 Rover

    Lang, A.; Kocsis, A.; Balaskó, D.; Csóka, B.; Molnar, B.; Sztojka, A.; Bejó, M.; Joób, Z.


    HUSAR-5 Rover reloaded: 2 years ago the Hunveyor-Husar Team in our school made yet a similar project. The ground idea was, we try to keep step with the main trends in the space research, in our recent case with the so called MSSM (Micro Sized Space- Mothership) and NPSDR (Nano, Pico Space Devices and Robots). [1]Of course, we do not want to scatter the smaller probe-cubes from a mothership, but from the Husar rover, and to do it on the planetary surface after landing. We have fabricated the rover with the ejecting tower and we have shown it on the EPSC 2015.The word "reloaded" means not only a new shape of the bullets, but a new mission with a new team. There are more pupils working in this project. The new bullets "SSSS" will be printed by a 3D printer.The microcontroller in bullets can be programmed with Arduino, so the "new generation" is able to do it.

  15. Automation and Robotics for space operation and planetary exploration

    Montemerlo, Melvin D.


    This paper presents a perspective of Automation and Robotics (A&R) research and developments at NASA in terms of its history, its current status, and its future. It covers artificial intelligence, telerobotics and planetary rovers, and it encompasses ground operations, operations in earth orbit, and planetary exploration.

  16. Development of the science instrument CLUPI: the close-up imager on board the ExoMars rover

    Josset, J.-L.; Beauvivre, S.; Cessa, V.; Martin, P.


    First mission of the Aurora Exploration Programme of ESA, ExoMars will demonstrate key flight and in situ enabling technologies, and will pursue fundamental scientific investigations. Planned for launch in 2013, ExoMars will send a robotic rover to the surface of Mars. The Close-UP Imager (CLUPI) instrument is part of the Pasteur Payload of the rover fixed on the robotic arm. It is a robotic replacement of one of the most useful instruments of the field geologist: the hand lens. Imaging of surfaces of rocks, soils and wind drift deposits at high resolution is crucial for the understanding of the geological context of any site where the Pasteur rover may be active on Mars. At the resolution provided by CLUPI (approx. 15 micrometer/pixel), rocks show a plethora of surface and internal structures, to name just a few: crystals in igneous rocks, sedimentary structures such as bedding, fracture mineralization, secondary minerals, details of the surface morphology, sedimentary bedding, sediment components, surface marks in sediments, soil particles. It is conceivable that even textures resulting from ancient biological activity can be visualized, such as fine lamination due to microbial mats (stromatolites) and textures resulting from colonies of filamentous microbes, potentially present in sediments and in palaeocavitites in any rock type. CLUPI is a complete imaging system, consisting of an APS (Active Pixel Sensor) camera with 27° FOV optics. The sensor is sensitive to light between 400 and 900 nm with 12 bits digitization. The fixed focus optics provides well focused images of 4 cm x 2.4 cm rock area at a distance of about 10 cm. This challenging camera system, less than 200g, is an independent scientific instrument linked to the rover on board computer via a SpaceWire interface. After the science goals and specifications presentation, the development of this complex high performance miniaturized imaging system will be described.

  17. Human-Automation Allocations for Current Robotic Space Operations

    Marquez, Jessica J.; Chang, Mai L.; Beard, Bettina L.; Kim, Yun Kyung; Karasinski, John A.


    gather existing lessons learned and best practices in these role assignments, from spaceflight operational experience of crew and ground teams that may be used to guide development for future systems. NASA and other space agencies have operational spaceflight experience with two key Human-Automation-Robotic (HAR) systems: heavy lift robotic arms and planetary robotic explorers. Additionally, NASA has invested in high-fidelity rover systems that can carry crew, building beyond Apollo's lunar rover. The heavy lift robotic arms reviewed are: Space Station Remote Manipulator System (SSRMS), Japanese Remote Manipulator System (JEMRMS), and the European Robotic Arm (ERA, designed but not deployed in space). The robotic rover systems reviewed are: Mars Exploration Rovers, Mars Science Laboratory rover, and the high-fidelity K10 rovers. Much of the design and operational feedback for these systems have been communicated to flight controllers and robotic design teams. As part of the mitigating the HARI risk for future human spaceflight operations, we must document function allocations between robots and humans that have worked well in practice.

  18. Lunar surface exploration using mobile robots

    Nishida, Shin-Ichiro; Wakabayashi, Sachiko


    A lunar exploration architecture study is being carried out by space agencies. JAXA is carrying out research and development of a mobile robot (rover) to be deployed on the lunar surface for exploration and outpost construction. The main target areas for outpost construction and lunar exploration are mountainous zones. The moon's surface is covered by regolith. Achieving a steady traversal of such irregular terrain constitutes the major technical problem for rovers. A newly developed lightweight crawler mechanism can effectively traverse such irregular terrain because of its low contact force with the ground. This fact was determined on the basis of the mass and expected payload of the rover. This paper describes a plan for Japanese lunar surface exploration using mobile robots, and presents the results of testing and analysis needed in their development. This paper also gives an overview of the lunar exploration robot to be deployed in the SELENE follow-on mission, and the composition of its mobility, navigation, and control systems.

  19. Evolutionary robotics

    In evolutionary robotics, a suitable robot control system is developed automatically through evolution due to the interactions between the robot and its environment. It is a complicated task, as the robot and the environment constitute a highly dynamical system. Several methods have been tried by various investigators to ...

  20. Robot Aesthetics

    Jochum, Elizabeth Ann; Putnam, Lance Jonathan

    This paper considers art-based research practice in robotics through a discussion of our course and relevant research projects in autonomous art. The undergraduate course integrates basic concepts of computer science, robotic art, live performance and aesthetic theory. Through practice...... in robotics research (such as aesthetics, culture and perception), we believe robot aesthetics is an important area for research in contemporary aesthetics....

  1. Filigree Robotics

    Tamke, Martin; Evers, Henrik Leander; Clausen Nørgaard, Esben


    Filigree Robotics experiments with the combination of traditional ceramic craft with robotic fabrication in order to generate a new narrative of fine three-dimensional ceramic ornament for architecture.......Filigree Robotics experiments with the combination of traditional ceramic craft with robotic fabrication in order to generate a new narrative of fine three-dimensional ceramic ornament for architecture....

  2. The Development of the Chemin Mineralogy Instrument and Its Deployment on Mars (and Latest Results from the Mars Science Laboratory Rover Curiosity)

    Blake, David F.


    The CheMin instrument (short for "Chemistry and Mineralogy") on the Mars Science Laboratory rover Curiosity is one of two "laboratory quality" instruments on board the Curiosity rover that is exploring Gale crater, Mars. CheMin is an X-ray diffractometer that has for the first time returned definitive and fully quantitative mineral identifications of Mars soil and drilled rock. I will describe CheMin's 23-year development from an idea to a spacecraft qualified instrument, and report on some of the discoveries that Curiosity has made since its entry, descent and landing on Aug. 6, 2012, including the discovery and characterization of the first habitable environment on Mars.

  3. A vision system for a Mars rover

    Wilcox, Brian H.; Gennery, Donald B.; Mishkin, Andrew H.; Cooper, Brian K.; Lawton, Teri B.; Lay, N. Keith; Katzmann, Steven P.


    A Mars rover must be able to sense its local environment with sufficient resolution and accuracy to avoid local obstacles and hazards while moving a significant distance each day. Power efficiency and reliability are extremely important considerations, making stereo correlation an attractive method of range sensing compared to laser scanning, if the computational load and correspondence errors can be handled. Techniques for treatment of these problems, including the use of more than two cameras to reduce correspondence errors and possibly to limit the computational burden of stereo processing, have been tested at JPL. Once a reliable range map is obtained, it must be transformed to a plan view and compared to a stored terrain database, in order to refine the estimated position of the rover and to improve the database. The slope and roughness of each terrain region are computed, which form the basis for a traversability map allowing local path planning. Ongoing research and field testing of such a system is described.

  4. (Nearly) Seven Years on Mars: Adventure, Adversity, and Achievements with the NASA Mars Exploration Rovers Spirit and Opportunity

    Bell, J. F.; Mars Exploration Rover Science; Engineering Teams


    NASA successfully landed twin rovers, Spirit and Opportunity, on Mars in January 2004, in the most ambitious mission of robotic exploration attempted to that time. Each rover is outfitted as a robot field geologist with an impressive array of scientific instruments--cameras, spectrometers, other sensors--designed to investigate the composition and geologic history of two distinctly-different landing sites. The sites were chosen because of their potential to reveal clues about the past history of water and climate on Mars, and thus to provide tests of the hypothesis that the planet may once have been an abode for life. In this presentation I will review the images, spectra, and chemical/mineralogic information that the rover team has been acquiring from the landing sites and along the rovers' 7.7 and 22.7 km traverse paths, respectively. The data and interpretations have been widely shared with the public and the scientific community through web sites, frequent press releases, and scientific publications, and they provide quantitative evidence that liquid water has played a role in the modification of the Martian surface during the earliest part of the planet's history. At the Spirit site in Gusev Crater, the role of water appears to have been relatively minor in general, although the recent discovery of enigmatic hydrated sulfate salt and amorphous silica deposits suggests that locally there may have been significant water-rock interactions, and perhaps even sustained hydrothermal activity. At the Opportunity site in Meridiani Planum, geologic and mineralogic evidence suggests that liquid water was stable at the surface and shallow subsurface for significant periods of early Martian geologic history. An exciting implication from both missions is that localized environments on early Mars may have been "habitable" by some terrestrial standards. As of early September 2010, the rovers had operated for 2210 and 2347 Martian days (sols), respectively, with the Spirit

  5. Autonomous Warplanes: NASA Rovers Lead the Way


    Warplanes NASA Rovers Lead the Way Michael R. Schroer Major, Air National Guard Wright Flyer No. 54 Air University Press Air Force Research Institute...between most airports across the continent proved an excellent further education in aviation. Piloting a business jet on a weeklong, 11- hop trek across...Research con- ducted by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration ( NASA ) offers useful lessons for the development of future military RPAs

  6. Slip Validation and Prediction for Mars Exploration Rovers

    Jeng Yen


    Full Text Available This paper presents a novel technique to validate and predict the rover slips on Martian surface for NASA’s Mars Exploration Rover mission (MER. Different from the traditional approach, the proposed method uses the actual velocity profile of the wheels and the digital elevation map (DEM from the stereo images of the terrain to formulate the equations of motion. The six wheel speed from the empirical encoder data comprises the vehicle's velocity, and the rover motion can be estimated using mixed differential and algebraic equations. Applying the discretization operator to these equations, the full kinematics state of the rover is then resolved by the configuration kinematics solution in the Rover Sequencing and Visualization Program (RSVP. This method, with the proper wheel slip and sliding factors, produces accurate simulation of the Mars Exploration rovers, which have been validated with the earth-testing vehicle. This computational technique has been deployed to the operation of the MER rovers in the extended mission period. Particularly, it yields high quality prediction of the rover motion on high slope areas. The simulated path of the rovers has been validated using the telemetry from the onboard Visual Odometry (VisOdom. Preliminary results indicate that the proposed simulation is very effective in planning the path of the rovers on the high-slope areas.

  7. Reconfigurable Autonomy for Future Planetary Rovers

    Burroughes, Guy

    Extra-terrestrial Planetary rover systems are uniquely remote, placing constraints in regard to communication, environmental uncertainty, and limited physical resources, and requiring a high level of fault tolerance and resistance to hardware degradation. This thesis presents a novel self-reconfiguring autonomous software architecture designed to meet the needs of extraterrestrial planetary environments. At runtime it can safely reconfigure low-level control systems, high-level decisional autonomy systems, and managed software architecture. The architecture can perform automatic Verification and Validation of self-reconfiguration at run-time, and enables a system to be self-optimising, self-protecting, and self-healing. A novel self-monitoring system, which is non-invasive, efficient, tunable, and autonomously deploying, is also presented. The architecture was validated through the use-case of a highly autonomous extra-terrestrial planetary exploration rover. Three major forms of reconfiguration were demonstrated and tested: first, high level adjustment of system internal architecture and goal; second, software module modification; and third, low level alteration of hardware control in response to degradation of hardware and environmental change. The architecture was demonstrated to be robust and effective in a Mars sample return mission use-case testing the operational aspects of a novel, reconfigurable guidance, navigation, and control system for a planetary rover, all operating in concert through a scenario that required reconfiguration of all elements of the system.

  8. Interactive Exploration Robots: Human-Robotic Collaboration and Interactions

    Fong, Terry


    For decades, NASA has employed different operational approaches for human and robotic missions. Human spaceflight missions to the Moon and in low Earth orbit have relied upon near-continuous communication with minimal time delays. During these missions, astronauts and mission control communicate interactively to perform tasks and resolve problems in real-time. In contrast, deep-space robotic missions are designed for operations in the presence of significant communication delay - from tens of minutes to hours. Consequently, robotic missions typically employ meticulously scripted and validated command sequences that are intermittently uplinked to the robot for independent execution over long periods. Over the next few years, however, we will see increasing use of robots that blend these two operational approaches. These interactive exploration robots will be remotely operated by humans on Earth or from a spacecraft. These robots will be used to support astronauts on the International Space Station (ISS), to conduct new missions to the Moon, and potentially to enable remote exploration of planetary surfaces in real-time. In this talk, I will discuss the technical challenges associated with building and operating robots in this manner, along with lessons learned from research conducted with the ISS and in the field.

  9. Field Tested Service Oriented Robotic Architecture: Case Study

    Flueckiger, Lorenzo; Utz, Hanz


    This paper presents the lessons learned from six years of experiments with planetary rover prototypes running the Service Oriented Robotic Architecture (SORA) developed by the Intelligent Robotics Group (IRG) at NASA Ames Research Center. SORA relies on proven software methods and technologies applied to the robotic world. Based on a Service Oriented Architecture and robust middleware, SORA extends its reach beyond the on-board robot controller and supports the full suite of software tools used during mission scenarios from ground control to remote robotic sites. SORA has been field tested in numerous scenarios of robotic lunar and planetary exploration. The results of these high fidelity experiments are illustrated through concrete examples that have shown the benefits of using SORA as well as its limitations.

  10. Spacecraft Spin Test Facility

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — FUNCTION: Provides the capability to correct unbalances of spacecraft by using dynamic measurement techniques and static/coupled measurements to provide products of...

  11. The Challenges in Applying Magnetroesistive Sensors on the 'Curiosity' Rover

    Johnson, Michael R.


    Magnetoresistive Sensors were selected for use on the motor encoders throughout the Curiosity Rover for motor position feedback devices. The Rover contains 28 acuators with a corresponding number of encoder assemblies. The environment on Mars provides opportunities for challenges to any hardware design. The encoder assemblies presented several barriers that had to be vaulted in order to say the rover was ready to fly. The environment and encoder specific design features provided challenges that had to be solved in time to fly.

  12. Martian Surface Mineralogy from Rovers with Spirit, Opportunity, and Curiosity

    Morris, Richard V.


    Beginning in 2004, NASA has landed three well-instrumented rovers on the equatorial martian surface. The Spirit rover landed in Gusev crater in early January, 2004, and the Opportunity rover landed on the opposite side of Mars at Meridian Planum 21 days later. The Curiosity rover landed in Gale crater to the west of Gusev crater in August, 2012. Both Opportunity and Curiosity are currently operational. The twin rovers Spirit and Opportunity carried Mossbauer spectrometers to determine the oxidation state of iron and its mineralogical composition. The Curiosity rover has an X-ray diffraction instrument for identification and quantification of crystalline materials including clay minerals. Instrument suites on all three rovers are capable of distinguishing primary rock-forming minerals like olivine, pyroxene and magnetite and products of aqueous alteration in including amorphous iron oxides, hematite, goethite, sulfates, and clay minerals. The oxidation state of iron ranges from that typical for unweathered rocks and soils to nearly completely oxidized (weathered) rocks and soils as products of aqueous and acid-sulfate alteration. The in situ rover mineralogy also serves as ground-truth for orbital observations, and orbital mineralogical inferences are used for evaluating and planning rover exploration.

  13. Automated Planning and Scheduling for Planetary Rover Distributed Operations

    Backes, Paul G.; Rabideau, Gregg; Tso, Kam S.; Chien, Steve


    Automated planning and Scheduling, including automated path planning, has been integrated with an Internet-based distributed operations system for planetary rover operations. The resulting prototype system enables faster generation of valid rover command sequences by a distributed planetary rover operations team. The Web Interface for Telescience (WITS) provides Internet-based distributed collaboration, the Automated Scheduling and Planning Environment (ASPEN) provides automated planning and scheduling, and an automated path planner provided path planning. The system was demonstrated on the Rocky 7 research rover at JPL.

  14. Commanding and Planning for Robots in Space Operations

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Autonomous and semi-autonomous systems like unmanned spacecraft or robotic vehicles have filled critical roles in NASA's great successes, surviving the harsh...

  15. Spacecraft Charge Monitor

    Goembel, L.


    We are currently developing a flight prototype Spacecraft Charge Monitor (SCM) with support from NASA's Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program. The device will use a recently proposed high energy-resolution electron spectroscopic technique to determine spacecraft floating potential. The inspiration for the technique came from data collected by the Atmosphere Explorer (AE) satellites in the 1970s. The data available from the AE satellites indicate that the SCM may be able to determine spacecraft floating potential to within 0.1 V under certain conditions. Such accurate measurement of spacecraft charge could be used to correct biases in space plasma measurements. The device may also be able to measure spacecraft floating potential in the solar wind and in orbit around other planets.

  16. Robotic environments

    Bier, H.H.


    Technological and conceptual advances in fields such as artificial intelligence, robotics, and material science have enabled robotic architectural environments to be implemented and tested in the last decade in virtual and physical prototypes. These prototypes are incorporating sensing-actuating

  17. Mars Relays Satellite Orbit Design Considerations for Global Support of Robotic Surface Missions

    Hastrup, Rolf; Cesarone, Robert; Cook, Richard; Knocke, Phillip; McOmber, Robert


    This paper discusses orbit design considerations for Mars relay satellite (MRS)support of globally distributed robotic surface missions. The orbit results reported in this paper are derived from studies of MRS support for two types of Mars robotic surface missions: 1) the mars Environmental Survey (MESUR) mission, which in its current definition would deploy a global network of up to 16 small landers, and 2)a Small Mars Sample Return (SMSR) mission, which included four globally distributed landers, each with a return stage and one or two rovers, and up to four additional sets of lander/rover elements in an extended mission phase.

  18. Healthcare Robotics

    Riek, Laurel D.


    Robots have the potential to be a game changer in healthcare: improving health and well-being, filling care gaps, supporting care givers, and aiding health care workers. However, before robots are able to be widely deployed, it is crucial that both the research and industrial communities work together to establish a strong evidence-base for healthcare robotics, and surmount likely adoption barriers. This article presents a broad contextualization of robots in healthcare by identifying key sta...

  19. The Athena Mars Rover Science Payload

    Squyes, S. W.; Arvidson, R.; Bell, J. F., III; Carr, M.; Christensen, P.; DesMarais, D.; Economou, T.; Gorevan, S.; Klingelhoefer, G.; Haskin, L.


    The Mars Surveyor missions that will be launched in April of 2001 will include a highly capable rover that is a successor to the Mars Pathfinder mission's Sojourner rover. The design goals for this rover are a total traverse distance of at least 10 km and a total lifetime of at least one Earth year. The rover's job will be to explore a site in Mars' ancient terrain, searching for materials likely to preserve a record of ancient martian water, climate, and possibly biology. The rover will collect rock and soil samples, and will store them for return to Earth by a subsequent Mars Surveyor mission in 2005. The Athena Mars rover science payload is the suite of scientific instruments and sample collection tools that will be used to perform this job. The specific science objectives that NASA has identified for the '01 rover payload are to: (1) Provide color stereo imaging of martian surface environments, and remotely-sensed point discrimination of mineralogical composition. (2) Determine the elemental and mineralogical composition of martian surface materials. (3) Determine the fine-scale textural properties of these materials. (4) Collect and store samples. The Athena payload has been designed to meet these objectives. The focus of the design is on field operations: making sure the rover can locate, characterize, and collect scientifically important samples in a dusty, dirty, real-world environment. The topography, morphology, and mineralogy of the scene around the rover will be revealed by Pancam/Mini-TES, an integrated imager and IR spectrometer. Pancam views the surface around the rover in stereo and color. It uses two high-resolution cameras that are identical in most respects to the rover's navigation cameras. The detectors are low-power, low-mass active pixel sensors with on-chip 12-bit analog-to-digital conversion. Filters provide 8-12 color spectral bandpasses over the spectral region from 0.4 to 1.1 micron Narrow-angle optics provide an angular resolution of 0

  20. Automation &robotics for future Mars exploration

    Schulte, W.; von Richter, A.; Bertrand, R.


    Automation and Robotics (A&R) are currently considered as a key technology for Mars exploration. initiatives in this field aim at developing new A&R systems and technologies for planetary surface exploration. Kayser-Threde led the study AROMA (Automation &Robotics for Human Mars Exploration) under ESA contract in order to define a reference architecture of A&R elements in support of a human Mars exploration program. One of the goals was to define new developments and to maintain the competitiveness of European industry within this field. We present a summary of the A&R study in respect to a particular system: The Autonomous Research Island (ARI). In the Mars exploration scenario initially a robotic outpost system lands at pre-selected sites in order to search for life forms and water and to analyze the surface, geology and atmosphere. A&R systems, i.e. rovers and autonomous instrument packages, perform a number of missions with scientific and technology development objectives on the surface of Mars as part of preparations for a human exploration mission. In the Robotic Outpost Phase ARI is conceived as an automated lander which can perform in-situ analysis. It consists of a service module and a micro-rover system for local investigations. Such a system is already under investigation and development in other TRP activities. The micro-rover system provides local mobility for in-situ scientific investigations at a given landing or deployment site. In the long run ARI supports also human Mars missions. An astronaut crew would travel larger distances in a pressurized rover on Mars. Whenever interesting features on the surface are identified, the crew would interrupt the travel and perform local investigations. In order to save crew time ARI could be deployed by the astronauts to perform time-consuming investigations as for example in-situ geochemistry analysis of rocks/soil. Later, the crew could recover the research island for refurbishment and deployment at another

  1. Industrial Robots.

    Reed, Dean; Harden, Thomas K.

    Robots are mechanical devices that can be programmed to perform some task of manipulation or locomotion under automatic control. This paper discusses: (1) early developments of the robotics industry in the United States; (2) the present structure of the industry; (3) noneconomic factors related to the use of robots; (4) labor considerations…

  2. Structured control for autonomous robots

    Simmons, R.G.


    To operate in rich, dynamic environments, autonomous robots must be able to effectively utilize and coordinate their limited physical and occupational resources. As complexity increases, it becomes necessary to impose explicit constraints on the control of planning, perception, and action to ensure that unwanted interactions between behaviors do not occur. This paper advocates developing complex robot systems by layering reactive behaviors onto deliberative components. In this structured control approach, the deliberative components handle normal situations and the reactive behaviors, which are explicitly constrained as to when and how they are activated, handle exceptional situations. The Task Control Architecture (TCA) has been developed to support this approach. TCA provides an integrated set of control constructs useful for implementing deliberative and reactive behaviors. The control constructs facilitate modular and evolutionary system development: they are used to integrate and coordinate planning, perception, and execution, and to incrementally improve the efficiency and robustness of the robot systems. To date, TCA has been used in implementing a half-dozen mobile robot systems, including an autonomous six-legged rover and indoor mobile manipulator

  3. Searching for Life with Rovers: Exploration Methods & Science Results from the 2004 Field Campaign of the "Life in the Atacama" Project and Applications to Future Mars Missions

    Cabrol, N. A.a; Wettergreen, D. S.; Whittaker, R.; Grin, E. A.; Moersch, J.; Diaz, G. Chong; Cockell, C.; Coppin, P.; Dohm, J. M.; Fisher, G.


    The Life In The Atacama (LITA) project develops and field tests a long-range, solarpowered, automated rover platform (Zo ) and a science payload assembled to search for microbial life in the Atacama desert. Life is barely detectable over most of the driest desert on Earth. Its unique geological, climatic, and biological evolution have created a unique training site for designing and testing exploration strategies and life detection methods for the robotic search for life on Mars.

  4. How Spacecraft Fly Spaceflight Without Formulae

    Swinerd, Graham


    About half a century ago a small satellite, Sputnik 1, was launched. The satellite did very little other than to transmit a radio signal to announce its presence in orbit. However, this humble beginning heralded the dawn of the Space Age. Today literally thousands of robotic spacecraft have been launched, many of which have flown to far-flung regions of the Solar System carrying with them the human spirit of scientific discovery and exploration. Numerous other satellites have been launched in orbit around the Earth providing services that support our technological society on the ground. How Spacecraft Fly: Spaceflight Without Formulae by Graham Swinerd focuses on how these spacecraft work. The book opens with a historical perspective of how we have come to understand our Solar System and the Universe. It then progresses through orbital flight, rocket science, the hostile environment within which spacecraft operate, and how they are designed. The concluding chapters give a glimpse of what the 21st century may ...

  5. Spacecraft 3D Augmented Reality Mobile App

    Hussey, Kevin J.; Doronila, Paul R.; Kumanchik, Brian E.; Chan, Evan G.; Ellison, Douglas J.; Boeck, Andrea; Moore, Justin M.


    The Spacecraft 3D application allows users to learn about and interact with iconic NASA missions in a new and immersive way using common mobile devices. Using Augmented Reality (AR) techniques to project 3D renditions of the mission spacecraft into real-world surroundings, users can interact with and learn about Curiosity, GRAIL, Cassini, and Voyager. Additional updates on future missions, animations, and information will be ongoing. Using a printed AR Target and camera on a mobile device, users can get up close with these robotic explorers, see how some move, and learn about these engineering feats, which are used to expand knowledge and understanding about space. The software receives input from the mobile device's camera to recognize the presence of an AR marker in the camera's field of view. It then displays a 3D rendition of the selected spacecraft in the user's physical surroundings, on the mobile device's screen, while it tracks the device's movement in relation to the physical position of the spacecraft's 3D image on the AR marker.

  6. Comprehension of Spacecraft Telemetry Using Hierarchical Specifications of Behavior

    Havelund, Klaus; Joshi, Rajeev


    A key challenge in operating remote spacecraft is that ground operators must rely on the limited visibility available through spacecraft telemetry in order to assess spacecraft health and operational status. We describe a tool for processing spacecraft telemetry that allows ground operators to impose structure on received telemetry in order to achieve a better comprehension of system state. A key element of our approach is the design of a domain-specific language that allows operators to express models of expected system behavior using partial specifications. The language allows behavior specifications with data fields, similar to other recent runtime verification systems. What is notable about our approach is the ability to develop hierarchical specifications of behavior. The language is implemented as an internal DSL in the Scala programming language that synthesizes rules from patterns of specification behavior. The rules are automatically applied to received telemetry and the inferred behaviors are available to ground operators using a visualization interface that makes it easier to understand and track spacecraft state. We describe initial results from applying our tool to telemetry received from the Curiosity rover currently roving the surface of Mars, where the visualizations are being used to trend subsystem behaviors, in order to identify potential problems before they happen. However, the technology is completely general and can be applied to any system that generates telemetry such as event logs.

  7. Robot Mechanisms

    Lenarcic, Jadran; Stanišić, Michael M


    This book provides a comprehensive introduction to the area of robot mechanisms, primarily considering industrial manipulators and humanoid arms. The book is intended for both teaching and self-study. Emphasis is given to the fundamentals of kinematic analysis and the design of robot mechanisms. The coverage of topics is untypical. The focus is on robot kinematics. The book creates a balance between theoretical and practical aspects in the development and application of robot mechanisms, and includes the latest achievements and trends in robot science and technology.

  8. Criticality safety for deactivation of the Rover dry headend process

    Henrikson, D.J.


    The Rover dry headend process combusted Rover graphite fuels in preparation for dissolution and solvent extraction for the recovery of 235 U. At the end of the Rover processing campaign, significant quantities of 235 U were left in the dry system. The Rover Dry Headend Process Deactivation Project goal is to remove the remaining uranium bearing material (UBM) from the dry system and then decontaminate the cells. Criticality safety issues associated with the Rover Deactivation Project have been influenced by project design refinement and schedule acceleration initiatives. The uranium ash composition used for calculations must envelope a wide range of material compositions, and yet result in cost effective final packaging and storage. Innovative thinking must be used to provide a timely safety authorization basis while the project design continues to be refined

  9. Robot Futures

    Christoffersen, Anja; Grindsted Nielsen, Sally; Jochum, Elizabeth Ann

    Robots are increasingly used in health care settings, e.g., as homecare assistants and personal companions. One challenge for personal robots in the home is acceptance. We describe an innovative approach to influencing the acceptance of care robots using theatrical performance. Live performance...... is a useful testbed for developing and evaluating what makes robots expressive; it is also a useful platform for designing robot behaviors and dialogue that result in believable characters. Therefore theatre is a valuable testbed for studying human-robot interaction (HRI). We investigate how audiences...... perceive social robots interacting with humans in a future care scenario through a scripted performance. We discuss our methods and initial findings, and outline future work....

  10. Robotics education

    Benton, O.


    Robotics education courses are rapidly spreading throughout the nation's colleges and universities. Engineering schools are offering robotics courses as part of their mechanical or manufacturing engineering degree program. Two year colleges are developing an Associate Degree in robotics. In addition to regular courses, colleges are offering seminars in robotics and related fields. These seminars draw excellent participation at costs running up to $200 per day for each participant. The last one drew 275 people from Texas to Virginia. Seminars are also offered by trade associations, private consulting firms, and robot vendors. IBM, for example, has the Robotic Assembly Institute in Boca Raton and charges about $1,000 per week for course. This is basically for owners of IBM robots. Education (and training) can be as short as one day or as long as two years. Here is the educational pattern that is developing now

  11. Fractionated Spacecraft Architectures Seeding Study

    Mathieu, Charlotte; Weigel, Annalisa


    .... Models were developed from a customer-centric perspective to assess different fractionated spacecraft architectures relative to traditional spacecraft architectures using multi-attribute analysis...

  12. Spacecraft momentum control systems

    Leve, Frederick A; Peck, Mason A


    The goal of this book is to serve both as a practical technical reference and a resource for gaining a fuller understanding of the state of the art of spacecraft momentum control systems, specifically looking at control moment gyroscopes (CMGs). As a result, the subject matter includes theory, technology, and systems engineering. The authors combine material on system-level architecture of spacecraft that feature momentum-control systems with material about the momentum-control hardware and software. This also encompasses material on the theoretical and algorithmic approaches to the control of space vehicles with CMGs. In essence, CMGs are the attitude-control actuators that make contemporary highly agile spacecraft possible. The rise of commercial Earth imaging, the advances in privately built spacecraft (including small satellites), and the growing popularity of the subject matter in academic circles over the past decade argues that now is the time for an in-depth treatment of the topic. CMGs are augmented ...

  13. Spacecraft Material Outgassing Data

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This compilation of outgassing data of materials intended for spacecraft use were obtained at the Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC), utilizing equipment developed...

  14. Spacecraft Fire Safety Demonstration

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The objective of the Spacecraft Fire Safety Demonstration project is to develop and conduct large-scale fire safety experiments on an International Space Station...

  15. Quick spacecraft charging primer

    Larsen, Brian Arthur


    This is a presentation in PDF format which is a quick spacecraft charging primer, meant to be used for program training. It goes into detail about charging physics, RBSP examples, and how to identify charging.

  16. Deployable Brake for Spacecraft

    Rausch, J. R.; Maloney, J. W.


    Aerodynamic shield that could be opened and closed proposed. Report presents concepts for deployable aerodynamic brake. Brake used by spacecraft returning from high orbit to low orbit around Earth. Spacecraft makes grazing passes through atmosphere to slow down by drag of brake. Brake flexible shield made of woven metal or ceramic withstanding high temperatures created by air friction. Stored until needed, then deployed by set of struts.

  17. The new V8-Diesel engine for Land Rover; Der neue V8-Dieselmotor fuer Land Rover

    Ernst, Roland [Ford Sued-Amerika (Brazil); Gruenert, Thomas; Turner, Paul [Ford Motor Company, Dagenham (United Kingdom)


    After the launch of the 2.7-l TDV6 diesel engine for Jaguar, Land Rover and PSA in the spring of 2004, here is a new member of the engine family. The new 3.6-l TDV8 Diesel engine was developed for Land Rover's Range Rover and Range Rover Sport models. The premium market segment positioning demands the best possible attributes from the engine, particularly torque as well as engine acoustics. According to the Land Rover specific requirements, the engine is fully off road capable and can be used in all world markets. The engine fulfills the Euro 4 emissions requirements and will be available with a regulated particle filter. (orig.)

  18. A Lab-on-Chip Design for Miniature Autonomous Bio-Chemoprospecting Planetary Rovers

    Santoli, S.

    The performance of the so-called ` Lab-on-Chip ' devices, featuring micrometre size components and employed at present for carrying out in a very fast and economic way the extremely high number of sequence determinations required in genomic analyses, can be largely improved as to further size reduction, decrease of power consumption and reaction efficiency through development of nanofluidics and of nano-to-micro inte- grated systems. As is shown, such new technologies would lead to robotic, fully autonomous, microwatt consumption and complete ` laboratory on a chip ' units for accurate, fast and cost-effective astrobiological and planetary exploration missions. The theory and the manufacturing technologies for the ` active chip ' of a miniature bio/chemoprospecting planetary rover working on micro- and nanofluidics are investigated. The chip would include micro- and nanoreactors, integrated MEMS (MicroElectroMechanical System) components, nanoelectronics and an intracavity nanolaser for highly accurate and fast chemical analysis as an application of such recently introduced solid state devices. Nano-reactors would be able to strongly speed up reaction kinetics as a result of increased frequency of reactive collisions. The reaction dynamics may also be altered with respect to standard macroscopic reactors. A built-in miniature telemetering unit would connect a network of other similar rovers and a central, ground-based or orbiting control unit for data collection and transmission to an Earth-based unit through a powerful antenna. The development of the ` Lab-on-Chip ' concept for space applications would affect the economy of space exploration missions, as the rover's ` Lab-on-Chip ' development would link space missions with the ever growing terrestrial market and business concerning such devices, largely employed in modern genomics and bioinformatics, so that it would allow the recoupment of space mission costs.

  19. Guidance and Navigation Software Architecture Design for the Autonomous Multi-Agent Physically Interacting Spacecraft (AMPHIS) Test Bed

    Eikenberry, Blake D


    .... This thesis contributes to this on-going research by addressing the development of the software architecture for the AMPHIS spacecraft simulator robots and the implementation of a Light Detection and Ranging (LIDAR...

  20. Applying FastSLAM to Articulated Rovers

    Hewitt, Robert Alexander

    This thesis presents the navigation algorithms designed for use on Kapvik, a 30 kg planetary micro-rover built for the Canadian Space Agency; the simulations used to test the algorithm; and novel techniques for terrain classification using Kapvik's LIDAR (Light Detection And Ranging) sensor. Kapvik implements a six-wheeled, skid-steered, rocker-bogie mobility system. This warrants a more complicated kinematic model for navigation than a typical 4-wheel differential drive system. The design of a 3D navigation algorithm is presented that includes nonlinear Kalman filtering and Simultaneous Localization and Mapping (SLAM). A neural network for terrain classification is used to improve navigation performance. Simulation is used to train the neural network and validate the navigation algorithms. Real world tests of the terrain classification algorithm validate the use of simulation for training and the improvement to SLAM through the reduction of extraneous LIDAR measurements in each scan.

  1. Rover's Wheel Churns Up Bright Martian Soil


    NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Spirit acquired this mosaic on the mission's 1,202nd Martian day, or sol (May 21, 2007), while investigating the area east of the elevated plateau known as 'Home Plate' in the 'Columbia Hills.' The mosaic shows an area of disturbed soil, nicknamed 'Gertrude Weise' by scientists, made by Spirit's stuck right front wheel. The trench exposed a patch of nearly pure silica, with the composition of opal. It could have come from either a hot-spring environment or an environment called a fumarole, in which acidic, volcanic steam rises through cracks. Either way, its formation involved water, and on Earth, both of these types of settings teem with microbial life. Spirit acquired this mosaic with the panoramic camera's 753-nanometer, 535-nanometer, and 432-nanometer filters. The view presented here is an approximately true-color rendering.

  2. Data Management for Mars Exploration Rovers

    Snyder, Joseph F.; Smyth, David E.


    Data Management for the Mars Exploration Rovers (MER) project is a comprehensive system addressing the needs of development, test, and operations phases of the mission. During development of flight software, including the science software, the data management system can be simulated using any POSIX file system. During testing, the on-board file system can be bit compared with files on the ground to verify proper behavior and end-to-end data flows. During mission operations, end-to-end accountability of data products is supported, from science observation concept to data products within the permanent ground repository. Automated and human-in-the-loop ground tools allow decisions regarding retransmitting, re-prioritizing, and deleting data products to be made using higher level information than is available to a protocol-stack approach such as the CCSDS File Delivery Protocol (CFDP).

  3. Human Exploration using Real-Time Robotic Operations (HERRO): A space exploration strategy for the 21st century

    Schmidt, George R.; Landis, Geoffrey A.; Oleson, Steven R.


    This paper presents an exploration strategy for human missions beyond Low Earth Orbit (LEO) and the Moon that combines the best features of human and robotic spaceflight. This "Human Exploration using Real-time Robotic Operations" (HERRO) strategy refrains from placing humans on the surfaces of the Moon and Mars in the near-term. Rather, it focuses on sending piloted spacecraft and crews into orbit around Mars and other exploration targets of interest, and conducting astronaut exploration of the surfaces using telerobots and remotely-controlled systems. By eliminating the significant communications delay or "latency" with Earth due to the speed of light limit, teleoperation provides scientists real-time control of rovers and other sophisticated instruments. This in effect gives them a "virtual presence" on planetary surfaces, and thus expands the scientific return at these destinations. HERRO mitigates several of the major issues that have hindered the progress of human spaceflight beyond Low Earth Orbit (LEO) by: (1) broadening the range of destinations for near-term human missions; (2) reducing cost and risk through less complexity and fewer man-rated elements; (3) offering benefits of human-equivalent in-situ cognition, decision-making and field-work on planetary bodies; (4) providing a simpler approach to returning samples from Mars and planetary surfaces; and (5) facilitating opportunities for international collaboration through contribution of diverse robotic systems. HERRO provides a firm justification for human spaceflight—one that expands the near-term capabilities of scientific exploration while providing the space transportation infrastructure needed for eventual human landings in the future.

  4. Autonomous planetary rover at Carnegie Mellon

    Whittaker, William; Kanade, Takeo; Mitchell, Tom


    This report describes progress in research on an autonomous robot for planetary exploration. In 1989, the year covered by this report, a six-legged walking robot, the Ambler, was configured, designed, and constructed. This configuration was used to overcome shortcomings exhibited by existing wheeled and walking robot mechanisms. The fundamental advantage of the Ambler is that the actuators for body support are independent of those for propulsion; a subset of the planar joints propel the body, and the vertical actuators support and level the body over terrain. Models of the Ambler's dynamics were developed and the leveling control was studied. An integrated system capable of walking with a single leg over rugged terrain was implemented and tested. A prototype of an Ambler leg is suspended below a carriage that slides along rails. To walk, the system uses a laser scanner to find a clear, flat foothold, positions the leg above the foothold, contacts the terrain with the foot, and applies force enough to advance the carriage along the rails. Walking both forward and backward, the system has traversed hundreds of meters of rugged terrain including obstacles too tall to step over, trenches too deep to step in, closely spaced rocks, and sand hills. In addition, preliminary experiments were conducted with concurrent planning and execution, and a leg recovery planner that generates time and power efficient 3D trajectories using 2D search was developed. A Hero robot was used to demonstrate mobile manipulation. Indoor tasks include collecting cups from the lab floor, retrieving printer output, and recharging when its battery gets low. The robot monitors its environment, and handles exceptional conditions in a robust fashion, using vision to track the appearance and disappearance of cups, onboard sonars to detect imminent collisions, and monitors to detect the battery level.

  5. The Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI) aboard the Mars rover, Curiosity

    Edgett, K. S.; Ravine, M. A.; Caplinger, M. A.; Ghaemi, F. T.; Schaffner, J. A.; Malin, M. C.; Baker, J. M.; Dibiase, D. R.; Laramee, J.; Maki, J. N.; Willson, R. G.; Bell, J. F., III; Cameron, J. F.; Dietrich, W. E.; Edwards, L. J.; Hallet, B.; Herkenhoff, K. E.; Heydari, E.; Kah, L. C.; Lemmon, M. T.; Minitti, M. E.; Olson, T. S.; Parker, T. J.; Rowland, S. K.; Schieber, J.; Sullivan, R. J.; Sumner, D. Y.; Thomas, P. C.; Yingst, R. A.


    The Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) rover, Curiosity, is expected to land on Mars in 2012. The Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI) will be used to document martian rocks and regolith with a 2-megapixel RGB color CCD camera with a focusable macro lens mounted on an instrument-bearing turret on the end of Curiosity's robotic arm. The flight MAHLI can focus on targets at working distances of 20.4 mm to infinity. At 20.4 mm, images have a pixel scale of 13.9 μm/pixel. The pixel scale at 66 mm working distance is about the same (31 μm/pixel) as that of the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) Microscopic Imager (MI). MAHLI camera head placement is dependent on the capabilities of the MSL robotic arm, the design for which presently has a placement uncertainty of ~20 mm in 3 dimensions; hence, acquisition of images at the minimum working distance may be challenging. The MAHLI consists of 3 parts: a camera head, a Digital Electronics Assembly (DEA), and a calibration target. The camera head and DEA are connected by a JPL-provided cable which transmits data, commands, and power. JPL is also providing a contact sensor. The camera head will be mounted on the rover's robotic arm turret, the DEA will be inside the rover body, and the calibration target will be mounted on the robotic arm azimuth motor housing. Camera Head. MAHLI uses a Kodak KAI-2020CM interline transfer CCD (1600 x 1200 active 7.4 μm square pixels with RGB filtered microlenses arranged in a Bayer pattern). The optics consist of a group of 6 fixed lens elements, a movable group of 3 elements, and a fixed sapphire window front element. Undesired near-infrared radiation is blocked using a coating deposited on the inside surface of the sapphire window. The lens is protected by a dust cover with a Lexan window through which imaging can be ac-complished if necessary, and targets can be illuminated by sunlight or two banks of two white light LEDs. Two 365 nm UV LEDs are included to search for fluores-cent materials at night. DEA

  6. Robotic buildings(s)

    Bier, H.H.


    Technological and conceptual advances in fields such as artificial intelligence, robotics, and material science have enabled robotic building to be in the last decade prototypically implemented. In this context, robotic building implies both physically built robotic environments and robotically

  7. System concepts and design examples for optical communication with planetary spacecraft

    Lesh, James R.

    Systems concepts for optical communication with future deep-space (planetary) spacecraft are described. These include not only the optical transceiver package aboard the distant spacecraft, but the earth-vicinity optical-communications receiving station as well. Both ground-based, and earth-orbiting receivers are considered. Design examples for a number of proposed or potential deep-space missions are then presented. These include an orbital mission to Saturn, a Lander and Rover mission to Mars, and an astronomical mission to a distance of 1000 astronomical units.

  8. Internet Technology on Spacecraft

    Rash, James; Parise, Ron; Hogie, Keith; Criscuolo, Ed; Langston, Jim; Powers, Edward I. (Technical Monitor)


    The Operating Missions as Nodes on the Internet (OMNI) project has shown that Internet technology works in space missions through a demonstration using the UoSAT-12 spacecraft. An Internet Protocol (IP) stack was installed on the orbiting UoSAT-12 spacecraft and tests were run to demonstrate Internet connectivity and measure performance. This also forms the basis for demonstrating subsequent scenarios. This approach provides capabilities heretofore either too expensive or simply not feasible such as reconfiguration on orbit. The OMNI project recognized the need to reduce the risk perceived by mission managers and did this with a multi-phase strategy. In the initial phase, the concepts were implemented in a prototype system that includes space similar components communicating over the TDRS (space network) and the terrestrial Internet. The demonstration system includes a simulated spacecraft with sample instruments. Over 25 demonstrations have been given to mission and project managers, National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), Department of Defense (DoD), contractor technologists and other decisions makers, This initial phase reached a high point with an OMNI demonstration given from a booth at the Johnson Space Center (JSC) Inspection Day 99 exhibition. The proof to mission managers is provided during this second phase with year 2000 accomplishments: testing the use of Internet technologies onboard an actual spacecraft. This was done with a series of tests performed using the UoSAT-12 spacecraft. This spacecraft was reconfigured on orbit at very low cost. The total period between concept and the first tests was only 6 months! On board software was modified to add an IP stack to support basic IP communications. Also added was support for ping, traceroute and network timing protocol (NTP) tests. These tests show that basic Internet functionality can be used onboard spacecraft. The performance of data was measured to show no degradation from current

  9. Using Multi-Core Systems for Rover Autonomy

    Clement, Brad; Estlin, Tara; Bornstein, Benjamin; Springer, Paul; Anderson, Robert C.


    Task Objectives are: (1) Develop and demonstrate key capabilities for rover long-range science operations using multi-core computing, (a) Adapt three rover technologies to execute on SOA multi-core processor (b) Illustrate performance improvements achieved (c) Demonstrate adapted capabilities with rover hardware, (2) Targeting three high-level autonomy technologies (a) Two for onboard data analysis (b) One for onboard command sequencing/planning, (3) Technologies identified as enabling for future missions, (4)Benefits will be measured along several metrics: (a) Execution time / Power requirements (b) Number of data products processed per unit time (c) Solution quality

  10. Mechanical Design of Spacecraft


    In the spring of 1962, engineers from the Engineering Mechanics Division of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory gave a series of lectures on spacecraft design at the Engineering Design seminars conducted at the California Institute of Technology. Several of these lectures were subsequently given at Stanford University as part of the Space Technology seminar series sponsored by the Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics. Presented here are notes taken from these lectures. The lectures were conceived with the intent of providing the audience with a glimpse of the activities of a few mechanical engineers who are involved in designing, building, and testing spacecraft. Engineering courses generally consist of heavily idealized problems in order to allow the more efficient teaching of mathematical technique. Students, therefore, receive a somewhat limited exposure to actual engineering problems, which are typified by more unknowns than equations. For this reason it was considered valuable to demonstrate some of the problems faced by spacecraft designers, the processes used to arrive at solutions, and the interactions between the engineer and the remainder of the organization in which he is constrained to operate. These lecture notes are not so much a compilation of sophisticated techniques of analysis as they are a collection of examples of spacecraft hardware and associated problems. They will be of interest not so much to the experienced spacecraft designer as to those who wonder what part the mechanical engineer plays in an effort such as the exploration of space.

  11. Integrated Navigation System Design for Micro Planetary Rovers: Comparison of Absolute Heading Estimation Algorithms and Nonlinear Filtering

    Ilyas, Muhammad; Hong, Beomjin; Cho, Kuk; Baeg, Seung-Ho; Park, Sangdeok


    This paper provides algorithms to fuse relative and absolute microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) navigation sensors, suitable for micro planetary rovers, to provide a more accurate estimation of navigation information, specifically, attitude and position. Planetary rovers have extremely slow speed (~1 cm/s) and lack conventional navigation sensors/systems, hence the general methods of terrestrial navigation may not be applicable to these applications. While relative attitude and position can be tracked in a way similar to those for ground robots, absolute navigation information is hard to achieve on a remote celestial body, like Moon or Mars, in contrast to terrestrial applications. In this study, two absolute attitude estimation algorithms were developed and compared for accuracy and robustness. The estimated absolute attitude was fused with the relative attitude sensors in a framework of nonlinear filters. The nonlinear Extended Kalman filter (EKF) and Unscented Kalman filter (UKF) were compared in pursuit of better accuracy and reliability in this nonlinear estimation problem, using only on-board low cost MEMS sensors. Experimental results confirmed the viability of the proposed algorithms and the sensor suite, for low cost and low weight micro planetary rovers. It is demonstrated that integrating the relative and absolute navigation MEMS sensors reduces the navigation errors to the desired level. PMID:27223293

  12. Soft Robotics.

    Whitesides, George M


    This description of "soft robotics" is not intended to be a conventional review, in the sense of a comprehensive technical summary of a developing field. Rather, its objective is to describe soft robotics as a new field-one that offers opportunities to chemists and materials scientists who like to make "things" and to work with macroscopic objects that move and exert force. It will give one (personal) view of what soft actuators and robots are, and how this class of soft devices fits into the more highly developed field of conventional "hard" robotics. It will also suggest how and why soft robotics is more than simply a minor technical "tweak" on hard robotics and propose a unique role for chemistry, and materials science, in this field. Soft robotics is, at its core, intellectually and technologically different from hard robotics, both because it has different objectives and uses and because it relies on the properties of materials to assume many of the roles played by sensors, actuators, and controllers in hard robotics. © 2018 Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  13. Spacecraft Attitude Determination

    Bak, Thomas

    This thesis describes the development of an attitude determination system for spacecraft based only on magnetic field measurements. The need for such system is motivated by the increased demands for inexpensive, lightweight solutions for small spacecraft. These spacecraft demands full attitude...... determination based on simple, reliable sensors. Meeting these objectives with a single vector magnetometer is difficult and requires temporal fusion of data in order to avoid local observability problems. In order to guaranteed globally nonsingular solutions, quaternions are generally the preferred attitude...... is a detailed study of the influence of approximations in the modeling of the system. The quantitative effects of errors in the process and noise statistics are discussed in detail. The third contribution is the introduction of these methods to the attitude determination on-board the Ørsted satellite...

  14. Revamping Spacecraft Operational Intelligence

    Hwang, Victor


    The EPOXI flight mission has been testing a new commercial system, Splunk, which employs data mining techniques to organize and present spacecraft telemetry data in a high-level manner. By abstracting away data-source specific details, Splunk unifies arbitrary data formats into one uniform system. This not only reduces the time and effort for retrieving relevant data, but it also increases operational visibility by allowing a spacecraft team to correlate data across many different sources. Splunk's scalable architecture coupled with its graphing modules also provide a solid toolset for generating data visualizations and building real-time applications such as browser-based telemetry displays.

  15. Dips spacecraft integration issues

    Determan, W.R.; Harty, R.B.


    The Department of Energy, in cooperation with the Department of Defense, has recently initiated the dynamic isotope power system (DIPS) demonstration program. DIPS is designed to provide 1 to 10 kW of electrical power for future military spacecraft. One of the near-term missions considered as a potential application for DIPS was the boost surveillance and tracking system (BSTS). A brief review and summary of the reasons behind a selection of DIPS for BSTS-type missions is presented. Many of these are directly related to spacecraft integration issues; these issues will be reviewed in the areas of system safety, operations, survivability, reliability, and autonomy

  16. MSR Fetch Rover Capability Development at the Canadian Space Agency

    Picard, M.; Hipkin, V.; Gingras, D.; Allard, P.; Lamarche, T.; Rocheleau, S. G.; Gemme, S.


    Describes Fetch Rover technology testing during CSA's 2016 Mars Sample Return Analogue Deployment which demonstrated autonomous navigation to 'cache depots' of M-2020-like sample tubes, acquisition of six such tubes, and transfer to a MAV mock up.

  17. Overview of the NASA automation and robotics research program

    Holcomb, Lee; Larsen, Ron


    NASA studies over the last eight years have identified five opportunities for the application of automation and robotics technology: (1) satellite servicing; (2) system monitoring, control, sequencing and diagnosis; (3) space manufacturing; (4) space structure assembly; and (5) planetary rovers. The development of these opportunities entails two technology R&D thrusts: telerobotics and system autonomy; both encompass such concerns as operator interface, task planning and reasoning, control execution, sensing, and systems integration.

  18. Pilot-plant development of a Rover waste calcination flowsheet

    Birrer, S.A.


    Results of eight runs, six using the 10-cm dia and two using the 30-cm dia pilot-plant calciners, in which simulated first-cycle Rover waste was calcined, are described. Results of the tests showed that a feed blend consisting of one volume simulated first-cycle Rover waste and one or two volumes simulated first-cycle zirconium waste could not be successfully calcined. 5 figs., 8 tables

  19. Robotics 101

    Sultan, Alan


    Robots are used in all kinds of industrial settings. They are used to rivet bolts to cars, to move items from one conveyor belt to another, to gather information from other planets, and even to perform some very delicate types of surgery. Anyone who has watched a robot perform its tasks cannot help but be impressed by how it works. This article…

  20. Vitruvian Robot

    Hasse, Cathrine


    future. A real version of Ava would not last long in a human world because she is basically a solipsist, who does not really care about humans. She cannot co-create the line humans walk along. The robots created as ‘perfect women’ (sex robots) today are very far from the ideal image of Ava...

  1. Potential of Probing the Lunar Regolith using Rover-Mounted Ground Penetrating Radar: Moses Lake Dune Field Analog Study

    Horz, F.; Heggy, E.; Fong, T.; Kring, D.; Deans, M.; Anglade, A.; Mahiouz, K.; Bualat, M.; Lee, P.; Bluethmann, W.


    Probing radars have been widely recognized by the science community to be an efficient tool to explore lunar subsurface providing a unique capability to address several scientific and operational issues. A wideband (200 to 1200 MHz) Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR) mounted on a surface rover can provide high vertical resolution and probing depth from few tens of centimeters to few tens of meters depending on the sounding frequency and the ground conductivity. This in term can provide a better understand regolith thickness, elemental iron concentration (including ilmenite), volatile presence, structural anomalies and fracturing. All those objectives are of important significance for understanding the local geology and potential sustainable resources for future landing sites in particular exploring the thickness, structural heterogeneity and potential volatiles presence in the lunar regolith. While the operation and data collection of GPR is a straightforward case for most terrestrial surveys, it is a challenging task for remote planetary study especially on robotic platforms due to the complexity of remote operation in rough terrains and the data collection constrains imposed by the mechanical motion of the rover and limitation in data transfer. Nevertheless, Rover mounted GPR can be of great support to perform systematic subsurface surveys for a given landing site as it can provide scientific and operational support in exploring subsurface resources and sample collections which can increase the efficiency of the EVA activities for potential human crews as part of the NASA Constellation Program. In this study we attempt to explore the operational challenges and their impact on the EVA scientific return for operating a rover mounted GPR in support of potential human activity on the moon. In this first field study, we mainly focused on the ability of GPR to support subsurface sample collection and explore shallow subsurface volatiles.

  2. Positive-Buoyancy Rover for Under Ice Mobility

    Leichty, John M.; Klesh, Andrew T.; Berisford, Daniel F.; Matthews, Jaret B.; Hand, Kevin P.


    A buoyant rover has been developed to traverse the underside of ice-covered lakes and seas. The rover operates at the ice/water interface and permits direct observation and measurement of processes affecting freeze- over and thaw events in lake and marine environments. Operating along the 2- D ice-water interface simplifies many aspects of underwater exploration, especially when compared to submersibles, which have difficulty in station-keeping and precision mobility. The buoyant rover consists of an all aluminum body with two aluminum sawtooth wheels. The two independent body segments are sandwiched between four actuators that permit isolation of wheel movement from movement of the central tether spool. For normal operations, the wheels move while the tether spool feeds out line and the cameras on each segment maintain a user-controlled fixed position. Typically one camera targets the ice/water interface and one camera looks down to the lake floor to identify seep sources. Each wheel can be operated independently for precision turning and adjustments. The rover is controlled by a touch- tablet interface and wireless goggles enable real-time viewing of video streamed from the rover cameras. The buoyant rover was successfully deployed and tested during an October 2012 field campaign to investigate methane trapped in ice in lakes along the North Slope of Alaska.

  3. Multi-rover navigation on the lunar surface

    Dabrowski, Borys; Banaszkiewicz, Marek


    The paper presents a method of determination an accurate position of a target (rover, immobile sensor, astronaut) on surface of the Moon or other celestial body devoid of navigation infrastructure (like Global Positioning System), by using a group of self-calibrating rovers, which serves as mobile reference points. The rovers are equipped with low-precision clocks synchronized by external broadcasting signal, to measure the moments of receiving radio signals sent by localized target. Based on the registered times, distances between transmitter and receivers installed on beacons are calculated. Each rover determines and corrects its own absolute position and orientation by using odometry navigation and measurements of relative distances and angles to other mobile reference points. Accuracy of navigation has been improved by the use of a calibration algorithm based on the extended Kalman filter, which uses internal encoder readings as inputs and relative measurements of distances and orientations between beacons as feedback information. The key idea in obtaining reliable values of absolute position and orientation of beacons is to first calibrate one of the rovers, using the remaining ones as reference points and then allow the whole group to move together and calibrate all the rovers in-motion. We consider a number of cases, in which basic modeling parameters such as terrain roughness, formation size and shape as well as availability of distance and angle measurements are varied.

  4. Robot Teachers

    Nørgård, Rikke Toft; Ess, Charles Melvin; Bhroin, Niamh Ni

    The world's first robot teacher, Saya, was introduced to a classroom in Japan in 2009. Saya, had the appearance of a young female teacher. She could express six basic emotions, take the register and shout orders like 'be quiet' (The Guardian, 2009). Since 2009, humanoid robot technologies have...... developed. It is now suggested that robot teachers may become regular features in educational settings, and may even 'take over' from human teachers in ten to fifteen years (cf. Amundsen, 2017 online; Gohd, 2017 online). Designed to look and act like a particular kind of human; robot teachers mediate human...... existence and roles, while also aiming to support education through sophisticated, automated, human-like interaction. Our paper explores the design and existential implications of ARTIE, a robot teacher at Oxford Brookes University (2017, online). Drawing on an initial empirical exploration we propose...

  5. Robot vision

    Hall, E.L.


    Almost all industrial robots use internal sensors such as shaft encoders which measure rotary position, or tachometers which measure velocity, to control their motions. Most controllers also provide interface capabilities so that signals from conveyors, machine tools, and the robot itself may be used to accomplish a task. However, advanced external sensors, such as visual sensors, can provide a much greater degree of adaptability for robot control as well as add automatic inspection capabilities to the industrial robot. Visual and other sensors are now being used in fundamental operations such as material processing with immediate inspection, material handling with adaption, arc welding, and complex assembly tasks. A new industry of robot vision has emerged. The application of these systems is an area of great potential

  6. Social Robots

    Social robotics is a cutting edge research area gathering researchers and stakeholders from various disciplines and organizations. The transformational potential that these machines, in the form of, for example, caregiving, entertainment or partner robots, pose to our societies and to us as indiv......Social robotics is a cutting edge research area gathering researchers and stakeholders from various disciplines and organizations. The transformational potential that these machines, in the form of, for example, caregiving, entertainment or partner robots, pose to our societies and to us...... as individuals seems to be limited by our technical limitations and phantasy alone. This collection contributes to the field of social robotics by exploring its boundaries from a philosophically informed standpoint. It constructively outlines central potentials and challenges and thereby also provides a stable...

  7. Robotic seeding

    Pedersen, Søren Marcus; Fountas, Spyros; Sørensen, Claus Aage Grøn


    Agricultural robotics has received attention for approximately 20 years, but today there are only a few examples of the application of robots in agricultural practice. The lack of uptake may be (at least partly) because in many cases there is either no compelling economic benefit......, or there is a benefit but it is not recognized. The aim of this chapter is to quantify the economic benefits from the application of agricultural robots under a specific condition where such a benefit is assumed to exist, namely the case of early seeding and re-seeding in sugar beet. With some predefined assumptions...... with regard to speed, capacity and seed mapping, we found that among these two technical systems both early seeding with a small robot and re-seeding using a robot for a smaller part of the field appear to be financially viable solutions in sugar beet production....

  8. Micro intelligence robot

    Jeon, Yon Ho


    This book gives descriptions of micro robot about conception of robots and micro robot, match rules of conference of micro robots, search methods of mazes, and future and prospect of robots. It also explains making and design of 8 beat robot like making technique, software, sensor board circuit, and stepping motor catalog, speedy 3, Mr. Black and Mr. White, making and design of 16 beat robot, such as micro robot artist, Jerry 2 and magic art of shortening distances algorithm of robot simulation.

  9. An Intelligent Robot Programing

    Hong, Seong Yong


    This book introduces an intelligent robot programing with background of the begging, introduction of VPL, and SPL, building of environment for robot platform, starting of robot programing, design of simulation environment, robot autonomy drive control programing, simulation graphic. Such as SPL graphic programing graphical image and graphical shapes, and graphical method application, application of procedure for robot control, robot multiprogramming, robot bumper sensor programing, robot LRF sencor programing and robot color sensor programing.

  10. An Intelligent Robot Programing

    Hong, Seong Yong


    This book introduces an intelligent robot programing with background of the begging, introduction of VPL, and SPL, building of environment for robot platform, starting of robot programing, design of simulation environment, robot autonomy drive control programing, simulation graphic. Such as SPL graphic programing graphical image and graphical shapes, and graphical method application, application of procedure for robot control, robot multiprogramming, robot bumper sensor programing, robot LRF sencor programing and robot color sensor programing.

  11. Human-Robot Teaming: Communication, Coordination, and Collaboration

    Fong, Terry


    In this talk, I will describe how NASA Ames has been studying how human-robot teams can increase the performance, reduce the cost, and increase the success of a variety of endeavors. The central premise of our work is that humans and robots should support one another in order to compensate for limitations of automation and manual control. This principle has broad applicability to a wide range of domains, environments, and situations. At the same time, however, effective human-robot teaming requires communication, coordination, and collaboration -- all of which present significant research challenges. I will discuss some of the ways that NASA Ames is addressing these challenges and present examples of our work involving planetary rovers, free-flying robots, and self-driving cars.

  12. Hand Gesture Based Wireless Robotic Arm Control for Agricultural Applications

    Kannan Megalingam, Rajesh; Bandhyopadhyay, Shiva; Vamsy Vivek, Gedela; Juned Rahi, Muhammad


    One of the major challenges in agriculture is harvesting. It is very hard and sometimes even unsafe for workers to go to each plant and pluck fruits. Robotic systems are increasingly combined with new technologies to automate or semi automate labour intensive work, such as e.g. grape harvesting. In this work we propose a semi-automatic method for aid in harvesting fruits and hence increase productivity per man hour. A robotic arm fixed to a rover roams in the in orchard and the user can control it remotely using the hand glove fixed with various sensors. These sensors can position the robotic arm remotely to harvest the fruits. In this paper we discuss the design of hand glove fixed with various sensors, design of 4 DoF robotic arm and the wireless control interface. In addition the setup of the system and the testing and evaluation under lab conditions are also presented in this paper.

  13. A novel traveling wave piezoelectric actuated tracked mobile robot utilizing friction effect

    Wang, Liang; Shu, Chengyou; Jin, Jiamei; Zhang, Jianhui


    A novel traveling wave piezoelectric-actuated tracked mobile robot with potential application to robotic rovers was proposed and investigated in this study. The proposed tracked mobile robot is composed of a parallelogram-frame-structure piezoelectric transducer with four rings and a metal track. Utilizing the converse piezoelectric and friction effects, traveling waves were propagated in the rings and then the metal track was actuated by the piezoelectric transducer. Compared with traditional tracked mechanisms, the proposed tracked mobile robot has a simpler and more compact structure without lubricant, which eliminates the problem of lubricant volatilization and deflation, thus, it could be operated in the vacuum environment. Dynamic characteristics were simulated and measured to reveal the mechanism of actuating track of the piezoelectric transducer. Experimental investigations of the traveling wave piezoelectric-actuated tracked mobile robot were then carried out, and the results indicated that the robot prototype with a pair of exciting voltages of 460 Vpp is able to achieve a maximum velocity of 57 mm s-1 moving on the foam plate and possesses the obstacle crossing capability with a maximum height of 27 mm. The proposed tracked mobile robot exhibits potential to be the driving system of robotic rovers.

  14. R4SA for Controlling Robots

    Aghazarian, Hrand


    The R4SA GUI mentioned in the immediately preceding article is a userfriendly interface for controlling one or more robot(s). This GUI makes it possible to perform meaningful real-time field experiments and research in robotics at an unmatched level of fidelity, within minutes of setup. It provides such powerful graphing modes as that of a digitizing oscilloscope that displays up to 250 variables at rates between 1 and 200 Hz. This GUI can be configured as multiple intuitive interfaces for acquisition of data, command, and control to enable rapid testing of subsystems or an entire robot system while simultaneously performing analysis of data. The R4SA software establishes an intuitive component-based design environment that can be easily reconfigured for any robotic platform by creating or editing setup configuration files. The R4SA GUI enables event-driven and conditional sequencing similar to those of Mars Exploration Rover (MER) operations. It has been certified as part of the MER ground support equipment and, therefore, is allowed to be utilized in conjunction with MER flight hardware. The R4SA GUI could also be adapted to use in embedded computing systems, other than that of the MER, for commanding and real-time analysis of data.

  15. Robot Tracking of Human Subjects in Field Environments

    Graham, Jeffrey; Shillcutt, Kimberly


    Future planetary exploration will involve both humans and robots. Understanding and improving their interaction is a main focus of research in the Intelligent Systems Branch at NASA's Johnson Space Center. By teaming intelligent robots with astronauts on surface extra-vehicular activities (EVAs), safety and productivity can be improved. The EVA Robotic Assistant (ERA) project was established to study the issues of human-robot teams, to develop a testbed robot to assist space-suited humans in exploration tasks, and to experimentally determine the effectiveness of an EVA assistant robot. A companion paper discusses the ERA project in general, its history starting with ASRO (Astronaut-Rover project), and the results of recent field tests in Arizona. This paper focuses on one aspect of the research, robot tracking, in greater detail: the software architecture and algorithms. The ERA robot is capable of moving towards and/or continuously following mobile or stationary targets or sequences of targets. The contributions made by this research include how the low-level pose data is assembled, normalized and communicated, how the tracking algorithm was generalized and implemented, and qualitative performance reports from recent field tests.

  16. Development of "Remotely Operated Vehicles for Education and Research" (ROVERs)

    Gaines, J. E.; Bland, G.; Bydlowski, D.


    The University of South Florida is a team member for the AREN project which develops educational technologies for data acquisition. "Remotely Operated Vehicles for Education and Research" (ROVERs) are floatable data acquisition systems used for Earth science measurements. The USF partnership was productive in the first year, resulting in new autonomous ROVER platforms being developed and used during a 5 week STEM summer camp by middle school youth. ROVERs were outfitted with GPS and temperature sensors and programmed to move forward, backwards, and to turn autonomously using the National Instruments myRIO embedded system. GLOBE protocols were used to collect data. The outreach program's structure lended itself to accomplishing an essential development effort for the AREN project towards the use of the ROVER platform in informal educational settings. A primary objective of the partnership is curriculum development to integrate GLOBE protocols and NASA technology and hardware/ROVER development wher new ROVER platforms are explored. The USF partnership resulted in two design prototypes for ROVERs, both of which can be created from recyclable materials for flotation and either 3D printed or laser cut components. In addition, both use the National Instruments myRIO for autonomous control. We will present two prototypes designed for use during the USF outreach program, the structure of the program, and details on the fabrication of prototype Z during the program by middle school students. Considering the 5-year objective of the AREN project is to "develop approaches, learning plans, and specific tools that can be affordably implemented nationwide (globally)", the USF partnership is key as it contributes to each part of the objective in a unique and impactful way.

  17. UXC55 Non-Magnetic Robot

    Najjar, Tony


    As part of the collaboration between CMS and the Lebanese American University, we are looking into building a non-magnetic inspection rover capable of roaming around UXC55 and specifically under the detector. The robot should be specifically tailored and engineered to cope with the strong magnetic field in the cavern (300 G on average with peaks up to 1500 G) as well as other constraints such as flammability and geometry. Moreover, we are also taking part in the development of the instrumentation and wireless communication of the rover. The biggest challenge in setting up a non-magnetic rover lies in the actuation mechanism, in other words, getting it to move; motors are rotary actuators that rely on the concept of a rotor “trying to catch up” to a rotating magnetic field. We quickly realize the complication with using this popular technology; the strong field created by the CMS magnet greatly interferes with the motor, rendering it utterly stalled. Our approach, on the other hand, consists of using compl...

  18. Space Robotics Challenge

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The Space Robotics Challenge seeks to infuse robot autonomy from the best and brightest research groups in the robotics community into NASA robots for future...

  19. Robotic arm

    Kwech, H.


    A robotic arm positionable within a nuclear vessel by access through a small diameter opening and having a mounting tube supported within the vessel and mounting a plurality of arm sections for movement lengthwise of the mounting tube as well as for movement out of a window provided in the wall of the mounting tube is disclosed. An end effector, such as a grinding head or welding element, at an operating end of the robotic arm, can be located and operated within the nuclear vessel through movement derived from six different axes of motion provided by mounting and drive connections between arm sections of the robotic arm. The movements are achieved by operation of remotely-controllable servo motors, all of which are mounted at a control end of the robotic arm to be outside the nuclear vessel. 23 figs

  20. Robotic surgery

    ... with this type of surgery give it some advantages over standard endoscopic techniques. The surgeon can make ... Elsevier Saunders; 2015:chap 87. Muller CL, Fried GM. Emerging technology in surgery: Informatics, electronics, robotics. In: ...

  1. Robotic parathyroidectomy.

    Okoh, Alexis Kofi; Sound, Sara; Berber, Eren


    Robotic parathyroidectomy has recently been described. Although the procedure eliminates the neck scar, it is technically more demanding than the conventional approaches. This report is a review of the patients' selection criteria, technique, and outcomes. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  2. Light Robotics

    Glückstad, Jesper; Palima, Darwin

    Light Robotics - Structure-Mediated Nanobiophotonics covers the latest means of sculpting of both light and matter for achieving bioprobing and manipulation at the smallest scales. The synergy between photonics, nanotechnology and biotechnology spans the rapidly growing field of nanobiophotonics...

  3. Robotic arm

    Kwech, Horst


    A robotic arm positionable within a nuclear vessel by access through a small diameter opening and having a mounting tube supported within the vessel and mounting a plurality of arm sections for movement lengthwise of the mounting tube as well as for movement out of a window provided in the wall of the mounting tube. An end effector, such as a grinding head or welding element, at an operating end of the robotic arm, can be located and operated within the nuclear vessel through movement derived from six different axes of motion provided by mounting and drive connections between arm sections of the robotic arm. The movements are achieved by operation of remotely-controllable servo motors, all of which are mounted at a control end of the robotic arm to be outside the nuclear vessel.

  4. An Analog Rover Exploration Mission for Education and Outreach

    Moores, John; Campbell, Charissa L.; Smith, Christina L.; Cooper, Brittney A.


    This abstract describes an analog rover exploration mission designed as an outreach program for high school and undergraduate students. This program is used to teach them about basic mission control operations, how to manage a rover as if it were on another planetary body, and employing the rover remotely to complete mission objectives. One iteration of this program has been completed and another is underway. In both trials, participants were shown the different operation processes involved in a real-life mission. Modifications were made to these processes to decrease complexity and better simulate a mission control environment in a short time period (three 20-minute-long mission “days”). In the first run of the program, participants selected a landing site, what instruments would be on the rover - subject to cost, size, and weight limitations - and were randomly assigned one of six different mission operations roles, each with specific responsibilities. For example, a Science Planner/Integrator (SPI) would plan science activities whilst a Rover Engineer (RE) would keep on top of rover constraints. Planning consisted of a series of four meetings to develop and verify the current plan, pre-plan the next day's activities and uplink the activities to the “rover” (a human colleague). Participants were required to attend certain meetings depending upon their assigned role. To conclude the mission, students viewed the site to understand any differences between remote viewing and reality in relation to the rover. Another mission is currently in progress with revisions from the earlier run to improve the experience. This includes broader roles and meetings and pre-selecting the landing site and rover. The new roles are: Mission Lead, Rover Engineer and Science Planner. The SPI role was previously popular so most of the students were placed in this category. The meetings were reduced to three but extended in length. We are also planning to integrate this program

  5. A Sampling Based Approach to Spacecraft Autonomous Maneuvering with Safety Specifications

    Starek, Joseph A.; Barbee, Brent W.; Pavone, Marco


    This paper presents a methods for safe spacecraft autonomous maneuvering that leverages robotic motion-planning techniques to spacecraft control. Specifically the scenario we consider is an in-plan rendezvous of a chaser spacecraft in proximity to a target spacecraft at the origin of the Clohessy Wiltshire Hill frame. The trajectory for the chaser spacecraft is generated in a receding horizon fashion by executing a sampling based robotic motion planning algorithm name Fast Marching Trees (FMT) which efficiently grows a tree of trajectories over a set of probabillistically drawn samples in the state space. To enforce safety the tree is only grown over actively safe samples for which there exists a one-burn collision avoidance maneuver that circularizes the spacecraft orbit along a collision-free coasting arc and that can be executed under potential thrusters failures. The overall approach establishes a provably correct framework for the systematic encoding of safety specifications into the spacecraft trajectory generations process and appears amenable to real time implementation on orbit. Simulation results are presented for a two-fault tolerant spacecraft during autonomous approach to a single client in Low Earth Orbit.

  6. Major accomplishments of America's nuclear rocket program (ROVER)

    Finseth, J.L.


    The United States embarked on a program to develop nuclear rocket engines in 1955. This program was known as project Rover. Initially nuclear rockets were considered as a potential backup for intercontinental ballistic missile propulsion but later proposed applications included both a lunar second stage as well as use in manned-Mars flights. Under the Rover program, 19 different reactors were built and tested during the period of 1959-1969. Additionally, several cold flow (non-fuelled) reactors were tested as well as a nuclear fuels test cell. The Rover program was terminated in 1973, due to budget constraints and an evolving political climate. The Rover program would have led to the development of a flight engine had the program continued through a logical continuation. The Rover program was responsible for a number of technological achievements. The successful operation of nuclear rocket engines on a system level represents the pinnacle of accomplishment. This paper will discuss the engine test program as well as several subsystems

  7. Archiving Data From the 2003 Mars Exploration Rover Mission

    Arvidson, R. E.


    The two Mars Exploration Rovers will touch down on the red planet in January 2004 and each will operate for at least 90 sols, traversing hundreds of meters across the surface and acquiring data from the Athena Science Payload (mast-based multi-spectral, stereo-imaging data and emission spectra; arm-based in-situ Alpha Particle X-Ray (APXS) and Mössbauer Spectroscopy, microscopic imaging, coupled with use of a rock abrasion tool) at a number of locations. In addition, the rovers will acquire science and engineering data along traverses to characterize terrain properties and perhaps be used to dig trenches. An "Analyst's Notebook" concept has been developed to capture, organize, archive and distribute raw and derived data sets and documentation ( The Notebooks will be implemented in ways that will allow users to "playback" the mission, using executed commands to drive animated views of rover activities, and pop-up windows to show why particular observations were acquired, along with displays of raw and derived data products. In addition, the archive will include standard Planetary Data System files and software for processing to higher-level products. The Notebooks will exist both as an online system and as a set of distributable Digital Video Discs or other appropriate media. The Notebooks will be made available through the Planetary Data System within six months after the end of observations for the relevant rovers.

  8. Recent advances in robotics

    Beni, G.; Hackwood, S.


    Featuring 10 contributions, this volume offers a state-of-the-art report on robotic science and technology. It covers robots in modern industry, robotic control to help the disabled, kinematics and dynamics, six-legged walking robots, a vector analysis of robot manipulators, tactile sensing in robots, and more

  9. A Battery Health Monitoring Framework for Planetary Rovers

    Daigle, Matthew J.; Kulkarni, Chetan Shrikant


    Batteries have seen an increased use in electric ground and air vehicles for commercial, military, and space applications as the primary energy source. An important aspect of using batteries in such contexts is battery health monitoring. Batteries must be carefully monitored such that the battery health can be determined, and end of discharge and end of usable life events may be accurately predicted. For planetary rovers, battery health estimation and prediction is critical to mission planning and decision-making. We develop a model-based approach utilizing computaitonally efficient and accurate electrochemistry models of batteries. An unscented Kalman filter yields state estimates, which are then used to predict the future behavior of the batteries and, specifically, end of discharge. The prediction algorithm accounts for possible future power demands on the rover batteries in order to provide meaningful results and an accurate representation of prediction uncertainty. The framework is demonstrated on a set of lithium-ion batteries powering a rover at NASA.

  10. Spacecraft exploration of asteroids

    Veverka, J.; Langevin, Y.; Farquhar, R.; Fulchignoni, M.


    After two decades of spacecraft exploration, we still await the first direct investigation of an asteroid. This paper describes how a growing international interest in the solar system's more primitive bodies should remedy this. Plans are under way in Europe for a dedicated asteroid mission (Vesta) which will include multiple flybys with in situ penetrator studies. Possible targets include 4 Vesta, 8 Flora and 46 Hestia; launch its scheduled for 1994 or 1996. In the United States, NASA plans include flybys of asteroids en route to outer solar system targets

  11. Spacecraft rendezvous and docking

    Jørgensen, John Leif


    The phenomenons and problems encountered when a rendezvous manoeuvre, and possible docking, of two spacecrafts has to be performed, have been the topic for numerous studies, and, details of a variety of scenarios has been analysed. So far, all solutions that has been brought into realization has...... been based entirely on direct human supervision and control. This paper describes a vision-based system and methodology, that autonomously generates accurate guidance information that may assist a human operator in performing the tasks associated with both the rendezvous and docking navigation...

  12. Nuclear thermal rocket workshop reference system Rover/NERVA

    Borowski, S.K.


    The Rover/NERVA engine system is to be used as a reference, against which each of the other concepts presented in the workshop will be compared. The following topics are reviewed: the operational characteristics of the nuclear thermal rocket (NTR); the accomplishments of the Rover/NERVA programs; and performance characteristics of the NERVA-type systems for both Mars and lunar mission applications. Also, the issues of ground testing, NTR safety, NASA's nuclear propulsion project plans, and NTR development cost estimates are briefly discussed

  13. A Rover Mobility Platform with Autonomous Capability to Enable Mars Sample Return

    Fulford, P.; Langley, C.; Shaw, A.


    The next step in understanding Mars is sample return. In Fall 2016, the CSA conducted an analogue deployment using the Mars Exploration Science Rover. An objective was to demonstrate the maturity of the rover's guidance, navigation, and control.

  14. Soft Robotics Week

    Rossiter, Jonathan; Iida, Fumiya; Cianchetti, Matteo; Margheri, Laura


    This book offers a comprehensive, timely snapshot of current research, technologies and applications of soft robotics. The different chapters, written by international experts across multiple fields of soft robotics, cover innovative systems and technologies for soft robot legged locomotion, soft robot manipulation, underwater soft robotics, biomimetic soft robotic platforms, plant-inspired soft robots, flying soft robots, soft robotics in surgery, as well as methods for their modeling and control. Based on the results of the second edition of the Soft Robotics Week, held on April 25 – 30, 2016, in Livorno, Italy, the book reports on the major research lines and novel technologies presented and discussed during the event.

  15. Module-based structure design of wheeled mobile robot

    Z. Luo


    Full Text Available This paper proposes an innovative and systematic approach for synthesizing mechanical structures of wheeled mobile robots. The principle and terminologies used for the proposed synthesis method are presented by adopting the concept of modular design, isomorphic and non-isomorphic, and set theory with its associated combinatorial mathematics. The modular-based innovative synthesis and design of wheeled robots were conducted at two levels. Firstly at the module level, by creative design and analysing the structures of classic wheeled robots, a wheel module set containing four types of wheel mechanisms, a suspension module set consisting of five types of suspension frames and a chassis module set composed of five types of rigid or articulated chassis were designed and generalized. Secondly at the synthesis level, two kinds of structure synthesis modes, namely the isomorphic-combination mode and the non-isomorphic combination mode were proposed to synthesize mechanical structures of wheeled robots; which led to 241 structures for wheeled mobile robots including 236 novel ones. Further, mathematical models and a software platform were developed to provide appropriate and intuitive tools for simulating and evaluating performance of the wheeled robots that were proposed in this paper. Eventually, physical prototypes of sample wheeled robots/rovers were developed and tested so as to prove and validate the principle and methodology presented in this paper.

  16. Rehabilitation robotics.

    Krebs, H I; Volpe, B T


    This chapter focuses on rehabilitation robotics which can be used to augment the clinician's toolbox in order to deliver meaningful restorative therapy for an aging population, as well as on advances in orthotics to augment an individual's functional abilities beyond neurorestoration potential. The interest in rehabilitation robotics and orthotics is increasing steadily with marked growth in the last 10 years. This growth is understandable in view of the increased demand for caregivers and rehabilitation services escalating apace with the graying of the population. We provide an overview on improving function in people with a weak limb due to a neurological disorder who cannot properly control it to interact with the environment (orthotics); we then focus on tools to assist the clinician in promoting rehabilitation of an individual so that s/he can interact with the environment unassisted (rehabilitation robotics). We present a few clinical results occurring immediately poststroke as well as during the chronic phase that demonstrate superior gains for the upper extremity when employing rehabilitation robotics instead of usual care. These include the landmark VA-ROBOTICS multisite, randomized clinical study which demonstrates clinical gains for chronic stroke that go beyond usual care at no additional cost. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  17. Medical robotics.

    Ferrigno, Giancarlo; Baroni, Guido; Casolo, Federico; De Momi, Elena; Gini, Giuseppina; Matteucci, Matteo; Pedrocchi, Alessandra


    Information and communication technology (ICT) and mechatronics play a basic role in medical robotics and computer-aided therapy. In the last three decades, in fact, ICT technology has strongly entered the health-care field, bringing in new techniques to support therapy and rehabilitation. In this frame, medical robotics is an expansion of the service and professional robotics as well as other technologies, as surgical navigation has been introduced especially in minimally invasive surgery. Localization systems also provide treatments in radiotherapy and radiosurgery with high precision. Virtual or augmented reality plays a role for both surgical training and planning and for safe rehabilitation in the first stage of the recovery from neurological diseases. Also, in the chronic phase of motor diseases, robotics helps with special assistive devices and prostheses. Although, in the past, the actual need and advantage of navigation, localization, and robotics in surgery and therapy has been in doubt, today, the availability of better hardware (e.g., microrobots) and more sophisticated algorithms(e.g., machine learning and other cognitive approaches)has largely increased the field of applications of these technologies,making it more likely that, in the near future, their presence will be dramatically increased, taking advantage of the generational change of the end users and the increasing request of quality in health-care delivery and management.

  18. Ground Simulation of an Autonomous Satellite Rendezvous and Tracking System Using Dual Robotic Systems

    Trube, Matthew J.; Hyslop, Andrew M.; Carignan, Craig R.; Easley, Joseph W.


    A hardware-in-the-loop ground system was developed for simulating a robotic servicer spacecraft tracking a target satellite at short range. A relative navigation sensor package "Argon" is mounted on the end-effector of a Fanuc 430 manipulator, which functions as the base platform of the robotic spacecraft servicer. Machine vision algorithms estimate the pose of the target spacecraft, mounted on a Rotopod R-2000 platform, relay the solution to a simulation of the servicer spacecraft running in "Freespace", which performs guidance, navigation and control functions, integrates dynamics, and issues motion commands to a Fanuc platform controller so that it tracks the simulated servicer spacecraft. Results will be reviewed for several satellite motion scenarios at different ranges. Key words: robotics, satellite, servicing, guidance, navigation, tracking, control, docking.

  19. Broadband Ground Penetrating Radar with conformal antennas for subsurface imaging from a rover

    Stillman, D. E.; Oden, C. P.; Grimm, R. E.; Ragusa, M.


    Ground-Penetrating Radar (GPR) allows subsurface imaging to provide geologic context and will be flown on the next two martian rovers (WISDOM on ExoMars and RIMFAX on Mars 2020). The motivation of our research is to minimize the engineering challenges of mounting a GPR antenna to a spacecraft, while maximizing the scientific capabilities of the GPR. The scientific capabilities increase with the bandwidth as it controls the resolution. Furthermore, ultra-wide bandwidth surveys allow certain mineralogies and rock units to be discriminated based on their frequency-dependent EM or scattering properties. We have designed and field-tested a prototype GPR that utilizes bi-static circularly polarized spiral antennas. Each antenna has a physical size of 61 x 61 x 4 cm, therefore two antennas could be mounted to the underbelly of a MSL-class rover. Spiral antennas were chosen because they have an inherent broadband response and provide a better low frequency response compared with similarly sized linearly polarized antennas. A horizontal spiral radiator emits energy both upward and downward directions. After the radiator is mounted to a metal surface (i.e. the underside of a rover), a cavity is formed that causes the upward traveling energy to reverberate and cause unwanted interference. This interference is minimized by 1) using a high metallization ratio on the spiral to reduce cavity emissions, and 2) placing absorbing material inside the cavity. The resulting antennas provide high gain (0 to 8 dBi) from 200 to 1000 MHz. The low frequency response can be improved by increasing the antenna thickness (i.e., cavity depth). In an initial field test, the antennas were combined with impulse GPR electronics that had ~140 dB of dynamic range (not including antennas) and a sand/clay interface 7 feet deep was detected. To utilize the full bandwidth the antennas, a gated Frequency Modulated Continuous Waveform system will be developed - similar to RIMFAX. The goal is to reach a

  20. Generic robot architecture

    Bruemmer, David J [Idaho Falls, ID; Few, Douglas A [Idaho Falls, ID


    The present invention provides methods, computer readable media, and apparatuses for a generic robot architecture providing a framework that is easily portable to a variety of robot platforms and is configured to provide hardware abstractions, abstractions for generic robot attributes, environment abstractions, and robot behaviors. The generic robot architecture includes a hardware abstraction level and a robot abstraction level. The hardware abstraction level is configured for developing hardware abstractions that define, monitor, and control hardware modules available on a robot platform. The robot abstraction level is configured for defining robot attributes and provides a software framework for building robot behaviors from the robot attributes. Each of the robot attributes includes hardware information from at least one hardware abstraction. In addition, each robot attribute is configured to substantially isolate the robot behaviors from the at least one hardware abstraction.

  1. 'Filigree Robotics'


    -scale 3D printed ceramics accompanied by prints, videos and ceramic probes, which introduce the material and design processes of the project.'Filigree Robotics' experiments with a combination of the traditional ceramic technique of ‘Overforming’ with 3d Laserscan and Robotic extrusion technique...... application of reflectivity after an initial 3d print. The consideration and integration of this material practice into a digital workflow took place in an interdisciplinary collaboration of Ceramicist Flemming Tvede Hansen from KADK Superformlab and architectural researchers from CITA (Martin Tamke, Henrik...... to the creation of the form and invites for experimentation. In Filigree Robotics we combine the crafting of the mold with a parallel running generative algorithm, which is fed by a constant laserscan of the 3d surface. This algorithm, analyses the topology of the mold, identifies high and low points and uses...

  2. Cloud Robotics Platforms

    Busra Koken


    Full Text Available Cloud robotics is a rapidly evolving field that allows robots to offload computation-intensive and storage-intensive jobs into the cloud. Robots are limited in terms of computational capacity, memory and storage. Cloud provides unlimited computation power, memory, storage and especially collaboration opportunity. Cloud-enabled robots are divided into two categories as standalone and networked robots. This article surveys cloud robotic platforms, standalone and networked robotic works such as grasping, simultaneous localization and mapping (SLAM and monitoring.

  3. Medical robotics

    Troccaz, Jocelyne


    In this book, we present medical robotics, its evolution over the last 30 years in terms of architecture, design and control, and the main scientific and clinical contributions to the field. For more than two decades, robots have been part of hospitals and have progressively become a common tool for the clinician. Because this domain has now reached a certain level of maturity it seems important and useful to provide a state of the scientific, technological and clinical achievements and still open issues. This book describes the short history of the domain, its specificity and constraints, and

  4. Service Robots

    Clemmensen, Torkil; Nielsen, Jeppe Agger; Andersen, Kim Normann

    The position presented in this paper is that in order to understand how service robots shape, and are being shaped by, the physical and social contexts in which they are used, we need to consider both work/organizational analysis and interaction design. We illustrate this with qualitative data...... and personal experiences to generate discussion about how to link these two traditions. This paper presents selected results from a case study that investigated the implementation and use of robot vacuum cleaners in Danish eldercare. The study demonstrates interpretive flexibility with variation...

  5. Robot Choreography

    Jochum, Elizabeth Ann; Heath, Damith


    We propose a robust framework for combining performance paradigms with human robot interaction (HRI) research. Following an analysis of several case studies that combine the performing arts with HRI experiments, we propose a methodology and “best practices” for implementing choreography and other...... performance paradigms in HRI experiments. Case studies include experiments conducted in laboratory settings, “in the wild”, and live performance settings. We consider the technical and artistic challenges of designing and staging robots alongside humans in these various settings, and discuss how to combine...

  6. Simulations of the magnetic properties experiment on Mars Exploration Rovers

    Gunnlaugsson, H. P.; Worm, E. S.; Bertelsen, P.; Goetz, W.; Kinch, K.; Madsen, M. B.; Merrison, J. P.; Nornberg, P.


    We present some of the main findings from simulation studies of the Magnetic Properties Experiment on the Mars Exploration Rovers. The results suggest that the dust has formed via mechanical breakdown of surface rocks through the geological history of the planet, and that liquid water need not have played any significant role in the dust formation processes.

  7. Autonomous navigation and mobility for a planetary rover

    Miller, David P.; Mishkin, Andrew H.; Lambert, Kenneth E.; Bickler, Donald; Bernard, Douglas E.


    This paper presents an overview of the onboard subsystems that will be used in guiding a planetary rover. Particular emphasis is placed on the planning and sensing systems and their associated costs, particularly in computation. Issues that will be used in evaluating trades between the navigation system and mobility system are also presented.

  8. 78 FR 19742 - Centennial Challenges: 2014 Night Rover Challenge


    ... NATIONAL AERONAUTICS AND SPACE ADMINISTRATION [Notice 13-032] Centennial Challenges: 2014 Night... Centennial Challenges 2014 Night Rover Challenge. SUMMARY: This notice is issued in accordance with 51 U.S.C.... Centennial Challenges is a program of prize competitions to stimulate innovation in technologies of interest...

  9. Pressure and Relative Humidity Measurement Devices for Mars 2020 Rover

    Hieta, M.; Genzer, M.; Nikkanen, T.; Haukka, H.; Harri, A.-M.; Polkko, J.; Rodriguez-Manfredi, J. A.


    One of the scientific payloads onboard the NASA Mars 2020 rover mission is Mars Environmental Dynamic Analyzer (MEDA): a set of environmental sensors for Mars surface weather measurements. Finnish Meteorological Institute (FMI) provides a pressure measurement device (MEDA PS) and a relative humidity measurement device (MEDA HS) for MEDA.

  10. A robotic system to characterize soft tailings deposits

    Lipsett, M.G.; Dwyer, S.C. [Alberta Univ., Edmonton, AB (Canada). Dept. of Mechanical Engineering


    A robotic system for characterizing soft tailings deposits was discussed in this presentation. The system was developed to reduce variability in feedstocks and process performance as well as to improve the trafficability of composite tailings (CT). The method was designed to reliably sample different locations of a soft deposit. Sensors were used to determine water content, clay content, organic matter, and strength. The system included an autonomous rover with a sensor package and teleoperation capability. The system was also designed to be used without automatic controls. The wheeled mobile robot was used to conduct ground contact and soil measurements. The gas-powered robot included on-board microcontrollers and a host computer. The system also featured traction control and fault recovery sub-systems. Wheel contact was used to estimate soil parameters. It was concluded that further research is needed to improve traction control and soil parameter estimation testing capabilities. Overall system block diagrams were included. tabs., figs.

  11. Artificial intelligence planning applications for space exploration and space robotics

    Rokey, Mark; Grenander, Sven


    Mission sequencing involves the plan for actuation of the experiments to be conducted aboard a spacecraft; automation is under study by NASA as a means to reduce time and manpower costs in mission planning and in robotic implementation. The development of a mission sequence is conditioned by the limited duration of advantageous spacecraft encounters with objects of study, more research requests than can be satisfied, and requested changes in objectives. Autonomous robot development is hampered by the absence of task-level programming languages, the existence of anomalies in real-world interactions, and a lack of required capabilities in current sensor technology.

  12. Cultural Robotics: The Culture of Robotics and Robotics in Culture

    Hooman Samani


    Full Text Available In this paper, we have investigated the concept of “Cultural Robotics” with regard to the evolution of social into cultural robots in the 21st Century. By defining the concept of culture, the potential development of a culture between humans and robots is explored. Based on the cultural values of the robotics developers, and the learning ability of current robots, cultural attributes in this regard are in the process of being formed, which would define the new concept of cultural robotics. According to the importance of the embodiment of robots in the sense of presence, the influence of robots in communication culture is anticipated. The sustainability of robotics culture based on diversity for cultural communities for various acceptance modalities is explored in order to anticipate the creation of different attributes of culture between robots and humans in the future.

  13. Robot vision for nuclear advanced robot

    Nakayama, Ryoichi; Okano, Hideharu; Kuno, Yoshinori; Miyazawa, Tatsuo; Shimada, Hideo; Okada, Satoshi; Kawamura, Astuo


    This paper describes Robot Vision and Operation System for Nuclear Advanced Robot. This Robot Vision consists of robot position detection, obstacle detection and object recognition. With these vision techniques, a mobile robot can make a path and move autonomously along the planned path. The authors implemented the above robot vision system on the 'Advanced Robot for Nuclear Power Plant' and tested in an environment mocked up as nuclear power plant facilities. Since the operation system for this robot consists of operator's console and a large stereo monitor, this system can be easily operated by one person. Experimental tests were made using the Advanced Robot (nuclear robot). Results indicate that the proposed operation system is very useful, and can be operate by only person. (author)

  14. Using Wind Driven Tumbleweed Rovers to Explore Martian Gully Features

    Antol, Jeffrey; Woodard, Stanley E.; Hajos, Gregory A.; Heldmann, Jennifer L.; Taylor, Bryant D.


    Gully features have been observed on the slopes of numerous Martian crater walls, valleys, pits, and graben. Several mechanisms for gully formation have been proposed, including: liquid water aquifers (shallow and deep), melting ground ice, snow melt, CO2 aquifers, and dry debris flow. Remote sensing observations indicate that the most likely erosional agent is liquid water. Debate concerns the source of this water. Observations favor a liquid water aquifer as the primary candidate. The current strategy in the search for life on Mars is to "follow the water." A new vehicle known as a Tumbleweed rover may be able to conduct in-situ investigations in the gullies, which are currently inaccessible by conventional rovers. Deriving mobility through use of the surface winds on Mars, Tumbleweed rovers would be lightweight and relatively inexpensive thus allowing multiple rovers to be deployed in a single mission to survey areas for future exploration. NASA Langley Research Center (LaRC) is developing deployable structure Tumbleweed concepts. An extremely lightweight measurement acquisition system and sensors are proposed for the Tumbleweed rover that greatly increases the number of measurements performed while having negligible mass increase. The key to this method is the use of magnetic field response sensors designed as passive inductor-capacitor circuits that produce magnetic field responses whose attributes correspond to values of physical properties for which the sensors measure. The sensors do not need a physical connection to a power source or to data acquisition equipment resulting in additional weight reduction. Many of the sensors and interrogating antennae can be directly placed on the Tumbleweed using film deposition methods such as photolithography thus providing further weight reduction. Concepts are presented herein for methods to measure subsurface water, subsurface metals, planetary winds and environmental gases.

  15. Measuring Soil Moisture in Skeletal Soils Using a COSMOS Rover

    Medina, C.; Neely, H.; Desilets, D.; Mohanty, B.; Moore, G. W.


    The presence of coarse fragments directly influences the volumetric water content of the soil. Current surface soil moisture sensors often do not account for the presence of coarse fragments, and little research has been done to calibrate these sensors under such conditions. The cosmic-ray soil moisture observation system (COSMOS) rover is a passive, non-invasive surface soil moisture sensor with a footprint greater than 100 m. Despite its potential, the COSMOS rover has yet to be validated in skeletal soils. The goal of this study was to validate measurements of surface soil moisture as taken by a COSMOS rover on a Texas skeletal soil. Data was collected for two soils, a Marfla clay loam and Chinati-Boracho-Berrend association, in West Texas. Three levels of data were collected: 1) COSMOS surveys at three different soil moistures, 2) electrical conductivity surveys within those COSMOS surveys, and 3) ground-truth measurements. Surveys with the COSMOS rover covered an 8000-h area and were taken both after large rain events (>2") and a long dry period. Within the COSMOS surveys, the EM38-MK2 was used to estimate the spatial distribution of coarse fragments in the soil around two COSMOS points. Ground truth measurements included coarse fragment mass and volume, bulk density, and water content at 3 locations within each EM38 survey. Ground-truth measurements were weighted using EM38 data, and COSMOS measurements were validated by their distance from the samples. There was a decrease in water content as the percent volume of coarse fragment increased. COSMOS estimations responded to both changes in coarse fragment percent volume and the ground-truth volumetric water content. Further research will focus on creating digital soil maps using landform data and water content estimations from the COSMOS rover.

  16. Robotic Surgery

    Childress, Vincent W.


    The medical field has many uses for automated and remote-controlled technology. For example, if a tissue sample is only handled in the laboratory by a robotic handling system, then it will never come into contact with a human. Such a system not only helps to automate the medical testing process, but it also helps to reduce the chances of…

  17. Laws on Robots, Laws by Robots, Laws in Robots : Regulating Robot Behaviour by Design

    Leenes, R.E.; Lucivero, F.


    Speculation about robot morality is almost as old as the concept of a robot itself. Asimov’s three laws of robotics provide an early and well-discussed example of moral rules robots should observe. Despite the widespread influence of the three laws of robotics and their role in shaping visions of

  18. Risk-Aware Planetary Rover Operation: Autonomous Terrain Classification and Path Planning

    Ono, Masahiro; Fuchs, Thoams J.; Steffy, Amanda; Maimone, Mark; Yen, Jeng


    Identifying and avoiding terrain hazards (e.g., soft soil and pointy embedded rocks) are crucial for the safety of planetary rovers. This paper presents a newly developed groundbased Mars rover operation tool that mitigates risks from terrain by automatically identifying hazards on the terrain, evaluating their risks, and suggesting operators safe paths options that avoids potential risks while achieving specified goals. The tool will bring benefits to rover operations by reducing operation cost, by reducing cognitive load of rover operators, by preventing human errors, and most importantly, by significantly reducing the risk of the loss of rovers.

  19. Performance of the Mechanically Pumped Fluid Loop Rover Heat Rejection System Used for Thermal Control of the Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity Rover on the Surface of Mars

    Bhandari, Pradeep; Birur, Gajanana; Bame, David; Mastropietro, A. J.; Miller, Jennifer; Karlmann, Paul; Liu, Yuanming; Anderson, Kevin


    The challenging range of landing sites for which the Mars Science Laboratory Rover was designed, required a rover thermal management system that is capable of keeping temperatures controlled across a wide variety of environmental conditions. On the Martian surface where temperatures can be as cold as -123 C and as warm as 38 C, the Rover relies upon a Mechanically Pumped Fluid Loop (MPFL) Rover Heat Rejection System (RHRS) and external radiators to maintain the temperature of sensitive electronics and science instruments within a -40 C to +50 C range. The RHRS harnesses some of the waste heat generated from the Rover power source, known as the Multi Mission Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator (MMRTG), for use as survival heat for the rover during cold conditions. The MMRTG produces 110 Watts of electrical power while generating waste heat equivalent to approximately 2000 Watts. Heat exchanger plates (hot plates) positioned close to the MMRTG pick up this survival heat from it by radiative heat transfer and supply it to the rover. This design is the first instance of use of a RHRS for thermal control of a rover or lander on the surface of a planet. After an extremely successful landing on Mars (August 5), the rover and the RHRS have performed flawlessly for close to an earth year (half the nominal mission life). This paper will share the performance of the RHRS on the Martian surface as well as compare it to its predictions.

  20. Scout Rover Applications for Forward Acquisition of Soil and Terrain Data

    Sonsalla, R.; Ahmed, M.; Fritsche, M.; Akpo, J.; Voegele, T.


    As opposed to the present mars exploration missions future mission concepts ask for a fast and safe traverse through vast and varied expanses of terrain. As seen during the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) mission the rovers suffered a lack of detailed soil and terrain information which caused Spirit to get permanently stuck in soft soil. The goal of the FASTER1 EU-FP7 project is to improve the mission safety and the effective traverse speed for planetary rover exploration by determining the traversability of the terrain and lowering the risk to enter hazardous areas. To achieve these goals, a scout rover will be used for soil and terrain sensing ahead of the main rover. This paper describes a highly mobile, and versatile micro scout rover that is used for soil and terrain sensing and is able to co-operate with a primary rover as part of the FASTER approach. The general reference mission idea and concept is addressed within this paper along with top-level requirements derived from the proposed ESA/NASA Mars Sample Return mission (MSR) [4]. Following the mission concept and requirements [3], a concept study for scout rover design and operations has been performed [5]. Based on this study the baseline for the Coyote II rover was designed and built as shown in Figure 1. Coyote II is equipped with a novel locomotion concept, providing high all terrain mobility and allowing to perform side-to-side steering maneuvers which reduce the soil disturbance as compared to common skid steering [6]. The rover serves as test platform for various scout rover application tests ranging from locomotion testing to dual rover operations. From the lessons learned from Coyote II and for an enhanced design, a second generation rover (namely Coyote III) as shown in Figure 2 is being built. This rover serves as scout rover platform for the envisaged FASTER proof of concept field trials. The rover design is based on the test results gained by the Coyote II trials. Coyote III is equipped with two

  1. Small Spacecraft for Planetary Science

    Baker, John; Castillo-Rogez, Julie; Bousquet, Pierre-W.; Vane, Gregg; Komarek, Tomas; Klesh, Andrew


    As planetary science continues to explore new and remote regions of the Solar system with comprehensive and more sophisticated payloads, small spacecraft offer the possibility for focused and more affordable science investigations. These small spacecraft or micro spacecraft (attitude control and determination, capable computer and data handling, and navigation are being met by technologies currently under development to be flown on CubeSats within the next five years. This paper will discuss how micro spacecraft offer an attractive alternative to accomplish specific science and technology goals and what relevant technologies are needed for these these types of spacecraft. Acknowledgements: Part of this work is being carried out at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology under contract to NASA. Government sponsorship acknowledged.

  2. i-SAIRAS '90; Proceedings of the International Symposium on Artificial Intelligence, Robotics and Automation in Space, Kobe, Japan, Nov. 18-20, 1990


    The present conference on artificial intelligence (AI), robotics, and automation in space encompasses robot systems, lunar and planetary robots, advanced processing, expert systems, knowledge bases, issues of operation and management, manipulator control, and on-orbit service. Specific issues addressed include fundamental research in AI at NASA, the FTS dexterous telerobot, a target-capture experiment by a free-flying robot, the NASA Planetary Rover Program, the Katydid system for compiling KEE applications to Ada, and speech recognition for robots. Also addressed are a knowledge base for real-time diagnosis, a pilot-in-the-loop simulation of an orbital docking maneuver, intelligent perturbation algorithms for space scheduling optimization, a fuzzy control method for a space manipulator system, hyperredundant manipulator applications, robotic servicing of EOS instruments, and a summary of astronaut inputs on automation and robotics for the Space Station Freedom.

  3. Conceptual Design and Architecture of Mars Exploration Rover (MER) for Seismic Experiments Over Martian Surfaces

    Garg, Akshay; Singh, Amit


    Keywords: MER, Mars, Rover, Seismometer Mars has been a subject of human interest for exploration missions for quite some time now. Both rover as well as orbiter missions have been employed to suit mission objectives. Rovers have been preferentially deployed for close range reconnaissance and detailed experimentation with highest accuracy. However, it is essential to strike a balance between the chosen science objectives and the rover operations as a whole. The objective of this proposed mechanism is to design a vehicle (MER) to carry out seismic studies over Martian surface. The conceptual design consists of three units i.e. Mother Rover as a Surrogate (Carrier) and Baby Rovers (two) as seeders for several MEMS-based accelerometer / seismometer units (Nodes). Mother Rover can carry these Baby Rovers, having individual power supply with solar cells and with individual data transmission capabilities, to suitable sites such as Chasma associated with Valles Marineris, Craters or Sand Dunes. Mother rover deploys these rovers in two opposite direction and these rovers follow a triangulation pattern to study shock waves generated through firing tungsten carbide shells into the ground. Till the time of active experiments Mother Rover would act as a guiding unit to control spatial spread of detection instruments. After active shock experimentation, the babies can still act as passive seismometer units to study and record passive shocks from thermal quakes, impact cratering & landslides. Further other experiments / payloads (XPS / GAP / APXS) can also be carried by Mother Rover. Secondary power system consisting of batteries can also be utilized for carrying out further experiments over shallow valley surfaces. The whole arrangement is conceptually expected to increase the accuracy of measurements (through concurrent readings) and prolong life cycle of overall experimentation. The proposed rover can be customised according to the associated scientific objectives and further

  4. Printed Spacecraft Separation System

    Dehoff, Ryan R [ORNL; Holmans, Walter [Planetary Systems Corporation


    In this project Planetary Systems Corporation proposed utilizing additive manufacturing (3D printing) to manufacture a titanium spacecraft separation system for commercial and US government customers to realize a 90% reduction in the cost and energy. These savings were demonstrated via “printing-in” many of the parts and sub-assemblies into one part, thus greatly reducing the labor associated with design, procurement, assembly and calibration of mechanisms. Planetary Systems Corporation redesigned several of the components of the separation system based on additive manufacturing principles including geometric flexibility and the ability to fabricate complex designs, ability to combine multiple parts of an assembly into a single component, and the ability to optimize design for specific mechanical property targets. Shock absorption was specifically targeted and requirements were established to attenuate damage to the Lightband system from shock of initiation. Planetary Systems Corporation redesigned components based on these requirements and sent the designs to Oak Ridge National Laboratory to be printed. ORNL printed the parts using the Arcam electron beam melting technology based on the desire for the parts to be fabricated from Ti-6Al-4V based on the weight and mechanical performance of the material. A second set of components was fabricated from stainless steel material on the Renishaw laser powder bed technology due to the improved geometric accuracy, surface finish, and wear resistance of the material. Planetary Systems Corporation evaluated these components and determined that 3D printing is potentially a viable method for achieving significant cost and savings metrics.

  5. Spectra and spacecraft

    Moroz, V. I.


    In June 1999, Dr. Regis Courtin, Associate Editor of PSS, suggested that I write an article for the new section of this journal: "Planetary Pioneers". I hesitated , but decided to try. One of the reasons for my doubts was my primitive English, so I owe the reader an apology for this in advance. Writing took me much more time than I supposed initially, I have stopped and again returned to manuscript many times. My professional life may be divided into three main phases: pioneering work in ground-based IR astronomy with an emphasis on planetary spectroscopy (1955-1970), studies of the planets with spacecraft (1970-1989), and attempts to proceed with this work in difficult times. I moved ahead using the known method of trials and errors as most of us do. In fact, only a small percentage of efforts led to some important results, a sort of dry residue. I will try to describe below how has it been in my case: what may be estimated as the most important, how I came to this, what was around, etc.

  6. Micro Robotics Lab

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — Our research is focused on the challenges of engineering robotic systems down to sub-millimeter size scales. We work both on small mobile robots (robotic insects for...

  7. Robots of the Future

    two main types of robots: industrial robots, and autonomous robots. .... position); it also has a virtual CPU with two stacks and three registers that hold 32-bit strings. Each item ..... just like we can aggregate images, text, and information from.

  8. Presentation robot Advee

    Krejsa, Jiří; Věchet, Stanislav; Hrbáček, J.; Ripel, T.; Ondroušek, V.; Hrbáček, R.; Schreiber, P.


    Roč. 18, 5/6 (2012), s. 307-322 ISSN 1802-1484 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z20760514 Keywords : mobile robot * human - robot interface * localization Subject RIV: JD - Computer Applications, Robot ics

  9. Towards Sociable Robots

    Ngo, Trung Dung

    This thesis studies aspects of self-sufficient energy (energy autonomy) for truly autonomous robots and towards sociable robots. Over sixty years of history of robotics through three developmental ages containing single robot, multi-robot systems, and social (sociable) robots, the main objective...... of roboticists mostly focuses on how to make a robotic system function autonomously and further, socially. However, such approaches mostly emphasize behavioural autonomy, rather than energy autonomy which is the key factor for not only any living machine, but for life on the earth. Consequently, self......-sufficient energy is one of the challenges for not only single robot or multi-robot systems, but also social and sociable robots. This thesis is to deal with energy autonomy for multi-robot systems through energy sharing (trophallaxis) in which each robot is equipped with two capabilities: self-refueling energy...

  10. Micro-Inspector Spacecraft for Space Exploration Missions

    Mueller, Juergen; Alkalai, Leon; Lewis, Carol


    NASA is seeking to embark on a new set of human and robotic exploration missions back to the Moon, to Mars, and destinations beyond. Key strategic technical challenges will need to be addressed to realize this new vision for space exploration, including improvements in safety and reliability to improve robustness of space operations. Under sponsorship by NASA's Exploration Systems Mission, the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), together with its partners in government (NASA Johnson Space Center) and industry (Boeing, Vacco Industries, Ashwin-Ushas Inc.) is developing an ultra-low mass (missions. The micro-inspector will provide remote vehicle inspections to ensure safety and reliability, or to provide monitoring of in-space assembly. The micro-inspector spacecraft represents an inherently modular system addition that can improve safety and support multiple host vehicles in multiple applications. On human missions, it may help extend the reach of human explorers, decreasing human EVA time to reduce mission cost and risk. The micro-inspector development is the continuation of an effort begun under NASA's Office of Aerospace Technology Enabling Concepts and Technology (ECT) program. The micro-inspector uses miniaturized celestial sensors; relies on a combination of solar power and batteries (allowing for unlimited operation in the sun and up to 4 hours in the shade); utilizes a low-pressure, low-leakage liquid butane propellant system for added safety; and includes multi-functional structure for high system-level integration and miniaturization. Versions of this system to be designed and developed under the H&RT program will include additional capabilities for on-board, vision-based navigation, spacecraft inspection, and collision avoidance, and will be demonstrated in a ground-based, space-related environment. These features make the micro-inspector design unique in its ability to serve crewed as well as robotic spacecraft, well beyond Earth-orbit and into arenas such

  11. Development and Engineering Design in Support of "Rover Ranch": A K-12 Outreach Software Project

    Pascali, Raresh


    A continuation of the initial development started in the summer of 1999, the body of work performed in support of 'ROVer Ranch' Project during the present fellowship dealt with the concrete concept implementation and resolution of the related issues. The original work performed last summer focused on the initial examination and articulation of the concept treatment strategy, audience and market analysis for the learning technologies software. The presented work focused on finalizing the set of parts to be made available for building an AERCam Sprint type robot and on defining, testing and implementing process necessary to convert the design engineering files to VRML files. Through reverse engineering, an initial set of mission critical systems was designed for beta testing in schools. The files were created in ProEngineer, exported to VRML 1.0 and converted to VRML 97 (VRML 2.0) for final integration in the software. Attributes for each part were assigned using an in-house developed JAVA based program. The final set of attributes for each system, their mutual interaction and the identification of the relevant ones to be tracked, still remain to be decided.

  12. An obstacle detection system using binocular stereo fisheye lenses for planetary rover navigation

    Liu, L.; Jia, J.; Li, L.

    In this paper we present an implementation of an obstacle detection system using binocular stereo fisheye lenses for planetary rover navigation The fisheye lenses can improve image acquisition efficiency and handle minimal clearance recovery problem because they provide a large field of view However the fisheye lens introduces significant distortion in the image and this will make it much more difficult to find a one-to-one correspondence In addition we have to improve the system accuracy and efficiency for robot navigation To compute dense depth maps accurately in real time the following five key issues are considered 1 using lookup tables for a tradeoff between time and space in fisheye distortion correction and correspondence matching 2 using an improved incremental calculation scheme for algorithmic optimization 3 multimedia instruction set MMX implementation 4 consistency check to remove wrong stereo matching problems suffering from occlusions or mismatches 5 constraints of the recovery space To realize obstacle detection robustly we use the following three steps 1 extracting the ground plane parameters using Randomized Hough Transform 2 filtering the ground and background 3 locating the obstacles by using connected region detection Experimental results show the system can run at 3 2fps in 2 0GHz PC with 640X480 pixels

  13. SSTAC/ARTS review of the draft Integrated Technology Plan (ITP). Volume 8: Aerothermodynamics Automation and Robotics (A/R) systems sensors, high-temperature superconductivity


    Viewgraphs of briefings presented at the SSTAC/ARTS review of the draft Integrated Technology Plan (ITP) on aerothermodynamics, automation and robotics systems, sensors, and high-temperature superconductivity are included. Topics covered include: aerothermodynamics; aerobraking; aeroassist flight experiment; entry technology for probes and penetrators; automation and robotics; artificial intelligence; NASA telerobotics program; planetary rover program; science sensor technology; direct detector; submillimeter sensors; laser sensors; passive microwave sensing; active microwave sensing; sensor electronics; sensor optics; coolers and cryogenics; and high temperature superconductivity.

  14. SSTAC/ARTS review of the draft Integrated Technology Plan (ITP). Volume 8: Aerothermodynamics Automation and Robotics (A/R) systems sensors, high-temperature superconductivity


    Viewgraphs of briefings presented at the SSTAC/ARTS review of the draft Integrated Technology Plan (ITP) on aerothermodynamics, automation and robotics systems, sensors, and high-temperature superconductivity are included. Topics covered include: aerothermodynamics; aerobraking; aeroassist flight experiment; entry technology for probes and penetrators; automation and robotics; artificial intelligence; NASA telerobotics program; planetary rover program; science sensor technology; direct detector; submillimeter sensors; laser sensors; passive microwave sensing; active microwave sensing; sensor electronics; sensor optics; coolers and cryogenics; and high temperature superconductivity

  15. Printable Spacecraft: Flexible Electronic Platforms for NASA Missions. Phase One

    Short, Kendra (Principal Investigator); Van Buren, David (Principal Investigator)


    Atmospheric confetti. Inchworm crawlers. Blankets of ground penetrating radar. These are some of the unique mission concepts which could be enabled by a printable spacecraft. Printed electronics technology offers enormous potential to transform the way NASA builds spacecraft. A printed spacecraft's low mass, volume and cost offer dramatic potential impacts to many missions. Network missions could increase from a few discrete measurements to tens of thousands of platforms improving areal density and system reliability. Printed platforms could be added to any prime mission as a low-cost, minimum resource secondary payload to augment the science return. For a small fraction of the mass and cost of a traditional lander, a Europa flagship mission might carry experimental printed surface platforms. An Enceladus Explorer could carry feather-light printed platforms to release into volcanic plumes to measure composition and impact energies. The ability to print circuits directly onto a variety of surfaces, opens the possibility of multi-functional structures and membranes such as "smart" solar sails and balloons. The inherent flexibility of a printed platform allows for in-situ re-configurability for aerodynamic control or mobility. Engineering telemetry of wheel/soil interactions are possible with a conformal printed sensor tape fit around a rover wheel. Environmental time history within a sample return canister could be recorded with a printed sensor array that fits flush to the interior of the canister. Phase One of the NIAC task entitled "Printable Spacecraft" investigated the viability of printed electronics technologies for creating multi-functional spacecraft platforms. Mission concepts and architectures that could be enhanced or enabled with this technology were explored. This final report captures the results and conclusions of the Phase One study. First, the report presents the approach taken in conducting the study and a mapping of results against the proposed

  16. Cloud Robotics Model

    Mester, Gyula


    Cloud Robotics was born from the merger of service robotics and cloud technologies. It allows robots to benefit from the powerful computational, storage, and communications resources of modern data centres. Cloud robotics allows robots to take advantage of the rapid increase in data transfer rates to offload tasks without hard real time requirements. Cloud Robotics has rapidly gained momentum with initiatives by companies such as Google, Willow Garage and Gostai as well as more than a dozen a...

  17. Design of a Robotic Ankle Joint for a Microspine-Based Robot

    Thatte, Nitish


    Successful robotic exploration of near-Earth asteroids necessitates a method of securely anchoring to the surface of these bodies without gravitational assistance. Microspine grip- per arrays that can grasp rock faces are a potential solution to this problem. A key component of a future microspine-based rover will be the ankle used to attach each microspine gripper to the robot. The ankle's purpose is twofold: 1) to allow the gripper to conform to the rock so a higher percentage of microspines attach to the surface, and 2) to neutralize torques that may dislodge the grippers from the wall. Parts were developed using computer aided design and manufactured using a variety of methods including selective laser sintering, CNC milling, and traditional manual machining techniques. Upon completion of the final prototype, the gripper and ankle system was tested to demonstrate robotic engagement and disengagement of the gripper and to determine load bearing ability. The immediate application of this project is to out t the Lemur IIb robot so it can climb and hang from rock walls.

  18. Robot Programming.


    Paris, France, June, 1982, 519-530. Latoinbe, J. C. "Equipe Intelligence Artificielle et Robotique: Etat d’avancement des recherches," Laboratoire...8217AD-A127 233 ROBOT PROGRRMMING(U) MASSACHUSETTS INST OFGTECHi/ CAMBRIDGE ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE LAB T LOZANO-PEREZ UNCLASSIFIED DC8 AI-9 N884...NAME AND ADDRESS 10. PROGRAM ELEMENT. PROJECT. TASK Artificial Intelligence Laboratory AREA I WORK UNIT NUMBERS ,. 545 Technology Square Cambridge

  19. Small Spacecraft Constellation Concept for Mars Atmospheric Radio Occultations

    Asmar, S. W.; Mannucci, A. J.; Ao, C. O.; Kobayashi, M. M.; Lazio, J.; Marinan, A.; Massone, G.; McCandless, S. E.; Preston, R. A.; Seubert, J.; Williamson, W.


    First demonstrated in 1965 when Mariner IV flew by Mars and determined the salient features of its atmosphere, radio occultation experiments have been carried out on numerous planetary missions with great discoveries. These experiments utilize the now classic configuration of a signal from a single planetary spacecraft to Earth receiving stations, where the science data are acquired. The Earth science community advanced the technique to utilizing a constellation of spacecraft with the radio occultation links between the spacecraft, enabled by the infrastructure of the Global Positioning System. With the advent of small and less costly spacecraft, such as planetary CubeSats and other variations, such as the anticipated innovative Mars Cube One mission, crosslinks among small spacecraft can be used to study other planets in the near future. Advantages of this type of experiment include significantly greater geographical coverage, which could reach global coverage over a few weeks with a small number of spacecraft. Repeatability of the global coverage can lead to examining temperature-pressure profiles and ionospheric electron density profiles, on daily, seasonal, annual, or other time scales of interest. The higher signal-to-noise ratio for inter-satellite links, compared to a link to Earth, decreases the design demands on the instrumentation (smaller antennas and transmitters, etc.). After an actual Mars crosslink demonstration, this concept has been in development using Mars as a possible target. Scientific objectives, delivery methods, operational scenarios and end-to-end configuration have been documented. Science objectives include determining the state and variability of the lower Martian atmosphere, which has been an identified as a high priority objective by the Mars Exploration Program Analysis Group, particularly as it relates to entry, descent, and landing and ascent for future crewed and robotic missions. This paper will present the latest research on the

  20. Friendly network robotics; Friendly network robotics



    This paper summarizes the research results on the friendly network robotics in fiscal 1996. This research assumes an android robot as an ultimate robot and the future robot system utilizing computer network technology. The robot aiming at human daily work activities in factories or under extreme environments is required to work under usual human work environments. The human robot with similar size, shape and functions to human being is desirable. Such robot having a head with two eyes, two ears and mouth can hold a conversation with human being, can walk with two legs by autonomous adaptive control, and has a behavior intelligence. Remote operation of such robot is also possible through high-speed computer network. As a key technology to use this robot under coexistence with human being, establishment of human coexistent robotics was studied. As network based robotics, use of robots connected with computer networks was also studied. In addition, the R-cube (R{sup 3}) plan (realtime remote control robot technology) was proposed. 82 refs., 86 figs., 12 tabs.

  1. The Athena Science Payload for the 2003 Mars Exploration Rovers

    Squyres, S. W.; Arvidson, R. E.; Bell, J. F., III; Carr, M.; Christensen, P.; DesMarais, D.; Economou, T.; Gorevan, S.; Haskin, L.; Herkenhoff, K.


    The Athena Mars rover payload is a suite of scientific instruments and tools for geologic exploration of the martian surface. It is designed to: (1) Provide color stereo imaging of martian surface environments, and remotely-sensed point discrimination of mineralogical composition. (2) Determine the elemental and mineralogical composition of martian surface materials, including soils, rock surfaces, and rock interiors. (3) Determine the fine-scale textural properties of these materials. Two identical copies of the Athena payload will be flown in 2003 on the two Mars Exploration Rovers. The payload is at a high state of maturity, and first copies of several of the instruments have already been built and tested for flight.

  2. NASA Curiosity rover hits organic pay dirt on Mars

    Voosen, Paul


    Since NASA's Curiosity rover landed on Mars in 2012, it has sifted samples of soil and ground-up rock for signs of organic molecules—the complex carbon chains that on Earth form the building blocks of life. Past detections have been so faint that they could be just contamination. Now, samples taken from two different drill sites on an ancient lakebed have yielded complex organic macromolecules that look strikingly similar to kerogen, the goopy fossilized building blocks of oil and gas on Earth. At a few dozen parts per million, the detected levels are 100 times higher than previous finds, but scientists still cannot say whether they have origins in biology or geology. The discovery positions scientists to begin searching for direct evidence of past life on Mars and bolsters the case for returning rock samples from the planet, an effort that begins with the Mars 2020 rover.

  3. Mars Exploration Rovers Launch Performance and TCM-1 Maneuver Design

    Kangas, Julie A.; Potts, Christopher L.; Raofi, Behzad


    The Mars Exploration Rover (MER) project successfully landed two identical rovers on Mars in order to remotely conduct geologic investigations, including characterization of rocks and soils that may hold clues to past water activity. Two landing sites, Gusev crater and Meridiani Planum, were selected out of nearly 200 candidate sites after balancing science returns and flight system engineering and safety. Precise trajectory targeting and control was necessary to achieve the atmospheric entry requirements for the selected landing sites within the flight system constraints. This paper discusses the expected and achieved launch vehicle performance and the impacts of that performance on the first Trajectory Correction Maneuver (TCM-1) while maintaining targeting flexibility in accommodating additional project concerns about landing site safety and possible in-flight retargeting to alternate landing sites.

  4. The use of automation and robotic systems to establish and maintain lunar base operations

    Petrosky, Lyman J.


    Robotic systems provide a means of performing many of the operations required to establish and maintain a lunar base. They form a synergistic system when properly used in concert with human activities. This paper discusses the various areas where robotics and automation may be used to enhance lunar base operations. Robots are particularly well suited for surface operations (exterior to the base habitat modules) because they can be designed to operate in the extreme temperatures and vacuum conditions of the Moon (or Mars). In this environment, the capabilities of semi-autonomous robots would surpass that of humans in all but the most complex tasks. Robotic surface operations include such activities as long range geological and mineralogical surveys with sample return, materials movement in and around the base, construction of radiation barriers around habitats, transfer of materials over large distances, and construction of outposts. Most of the above operations could be performed with minor modifications to a single basic robotic rover. Within the lunar base habitats there are a few areas where robotic operations would be preferable to human operations. Such areas include routine inspections for leakage in the habitat and its systems, underground transfer of materials between habitats, and replacement of consumables. In these and many other activities, robotic systems will greatly enhance lunar base operations. The robotic systems described in this paper are based on what is realistically achievable with relatively near term technology. A lunar base can be built and maintained if we are willing.

  5. Cultural Robotics: The Culture of Robotics and Robotics in Culture

    Hooman Samani; Elham Saadatian; Natalie Pang; Doros Polydorou; Owen Noel Newton Fernando; Ryohei Nakatsu; Jeffrey Tzu Kwan Valino Koh


    In this paper, we have investigated the concept of “Cultural Robotics” with regard to the evolution of social into cultural robots in the 21st Century. By defining the concept of culture, the potential development of a culture between humans and robots is explored. Based on the cultural values of the robotics developers, and the learning ability of current robots, cultural attributes in this regard are in the process of being formed, which would define the new concept of cultural robotics. Ac...

  6. Spacecraft Charging and the Microwave Anisotropy Probe Spacecraft

    Timothy, VanSant J.; Neergaard, Linda F.


    The Microwave Anisotropy Probe (MAP), a MIDEX mission built in partnership between Princeton University and the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC), will study the cosmic microwave background. It will be inserted into a highly elliptical earth orbit for several weeks and then use a lunar gravity assist to orbit around the second Lagrangian point (L2), 1.5 million kilometers, anti-sunward from the earth. The charging environment for the phasing loops and at L2 was evaluated. There is a limited set of data for L2; the GEOTAIL spacecraft measured relatively low spacecraft potentials (approx. 50 V maximum) near L2. The main area of concern for charging on the MAP spacecraft is the well-established threat posed by the "geosynchronous region" between 6-10 Re. The launch in the autumn of 2000 will coincide with the falling of the solar maximum, a period when the likelihood of a substorm is higher than usual. The likelihood of a substorm at that time has been roughly estimated to be on the order of 20% for a typical MAP mission profile. Because of the possibility of spacecraft charging, a requirement for conductive spacecraft surfaces was established early in the program. Subsequent NASCAP/GEO analyses for the MAP spacecraft demonstrated that a significant portion of the sunlit surface (solar cell cover glass and sunshade) could have nonconductive surfaces without significantly raising differential charging. The need for conductive materials on surfaces continually in eclipse has also been reinforced by NASCAP analyses.

  7. Mars Exploration Rover Spirit End of Mission Report

    Callas, John L.


    The Mars Exploration Rover (MER) Spirit landed in Gusev crater on Mars on January 4, 2004, for a prime mission designed to last three months (90 sols). After more than six years operating on the surface of Mars, the last communication received from Spirit occurred on Sol 2210 (March 22, 2010). Following the loss of signal, the Mars Exploration Rover Project radiated over 1400 commands to Mars in an attempt to elicit a response from the rover. Attempts were made utilizing Deep Space Network X-Band and UHF relay via both Mars Odyssey and the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. Search and recovery efforts concluded on July 13, 2011. It is the MER project's assessment that Spirit succumbed to the extreme environmental conditions experienced during its fourth winter on Mars. Focusing on the time period from the end of the third Martian winter through the fourth winter and end of recovery activities, this report describes possible explanations for the loss of the vehicle and the extent of recovery efforts that were performed. It offers lessons learned and provides an overall mission summary.

  8. Researches on hazard avoidance cameras calibration of Lunar Rover

    Li, Chunyan; Wang, Li; Lu, Xin; Chen, Jihua; Fan, Shenghong


    Lunar Lander and Rover of China will be launched in 2013. It will finish the mission targets of lunar soft landing and patrol exploration. Lunar Rover has forward facing stereo camera pair (Hazcams) for hazard avoidance. Hazcams calibration is essential for stereo vision. The Hazcam optics are f-theta fish-eye lenses with a 120°×120° horizontal/vertical field of view (FOV) and a 170° diagonal FOV. They introduce significant distortion in images and the acquired images are quite warped, which makes conventional camera calibration algorithms no longer work well. A photogrammetric calibration method of geometric model for the type of optical fish-eye constructions is investigated in this paper. In the method, Hazcams model is represented by collinearity equations with interior orientation and exterior orientation parameters [1] [2]. For high-precision applications, the accurate calibration model is formulated with the radial symmetric distortion and the decentering distortion as well as parameters to model affinity and shear based on the fisheye deformation model [3] [4]. The proposed method has been applied to the stereo camera calibration system for Lunar Rover.

  9. Spacecraft Environmental Interactions Technology, 1983


    State of the art of environment interactions dealing with low-Earth-orbit plasmas; high-voltage systems; spacecraft charging; materials effects; and direction of future programs are contained in over 50 papers.

  10. Gravity Probe B spacecraft description

    Bennett, Norman R; Burns, Kevin; Katz, Russell; Kirschenbaum, Jon; Mason, Gary; Shehata, Shawky


    The Gravity Probe B spacecraft, developed, integrated, and tested by Lockheed Missiles and Space Company and later Lockheed Martin Corporation, consisted of structures, mechanisms, command and data handling, attitude and translation control, electrical power, thermal control, flight software, and communications. When integrated with the payload elements, the integrated system became the space vehicle. Key requirements shaping the design of the spacecraft were: (1) the tight mission timeline (17 months, 9 days of on-orbit operation), (2) precise attitude and translational control, (3) thermal protection of science hardware, (4) minimizing aerodynamic, magnetic, and eddy current effects, and (5) the need to provide a robust, low risk spacecraft. The spacecraft met all mission requirements, as demonstrated by dewar lifetime meeting specification, positive power and thermal margins, precision attitude control and drag-free performance, reliable communications, and the collection of more than 97% of the available science data. (paper)

  11. Intelligent spacecraft module

    Oungrinis, Konstantinos-Alketas; Liapi, Marianthi; Kelesidi, Anna; Gargalis, Leonidas; Telo, Marinela; Ntzoufras, Sotiris; Paschidi, Mariana


    The paper presents the development of an on-going research project that focuses on a human-centered design approach to habitable spacecraft modules. It focuses on the technical requirements and proposes approaches on how to achieve a spatial arrangement of the interior that addresses sufficiently the functional, physiological and psychosocial needs of the people living and working in such confined spaces that entail long-term environmental threats to human health and performance. Since the research perspective examines the issue from a qualitative point of view, it is based on establishing specific relationships between the built environment and its users, targeting people's bodily and psychological comfort as a measure toward a successful mission. This research has two basic branches, one examining the context of the system's operation and behavior and the other in the direction of identifying, experimenting and formulating the environment that successfully performs according to the desired context. The latter aspect is researched upon the construction of a scaled-model on which we run series of tests to identify the materiality, the geometry and the electronic infrastructure required. Guided by the principles of sensponsive architecture, the ISM research project explores the application of the necessary spatial arrangement and behavior for a user-centered, functional interior where the appropriate intelligent systems are based upon the existing mechanical and chemical support ones featured on space today, and especially on the ISS. The problem is set according to the characteristics presented at the Mars500 project, regarding the living quarters of six crew-members, along with their hygiene, leisure and eating areas. Transformable design techniques introduce spatial economy, adjustable zoning and increased efficiency within the interior, securing at the same time precise spatial orientation and character at any given time. The sensponsive configuration is

  12. Calibration of Robot Reference Frames for Enhanced Robot Positioning Accuracy

    Cheng, Frank Shaopeng


    This chapter discussed the importance and methods of conducting robot workcell calibration for enhancing the accuracy of the robot TCP positions in industrial robot applications. It shows that the robot frame transformations define the robot geometric parameters such as joint position variables, link dimensions, and joint offsets in an industrial robot system. The D-H representation allows the robot designer to model the robot motion geometry with the four standard D-H parameters. The robot k...

  13. A Dual Launch Robotic and Human Lunar Mission Architecture

    Jones, David L.; Mulqueen, Jack; Percy, Tom; Griffin, Brand; Smitherman, David


    This paper describes a comprehensive lunar exploration architecture developed by Marshall Space Flight Center's Advanced Concepts Office that features a science-based surface exploration strategy and a transportation architecture that uses two launches of a heavy lift launch vehicle to deliver human and robotic mission systems to the moon. The principal advantage of the dual launch lunar mission strategy is the reduced cost and risk resulting from the development of just one launch vehicle system. The dual launch lunar mission architecture may also enhance opportunities for commercial and international partnerships by using expendable launch vehicle services for robotic missions or development of surface exploration elements. Furthermore, this architecture is particularly suited to the integration of robotic and human exploration to maximize science return. For surface operations, an innovative dual-mode rover is presented that is capable of performing robotic science exploration as well as transporting human crew conducting surface exploration. The dual-mode rover can be deployed to the lunar surface to perform precursor science activities, collect samples, scout potential crew landing sites, and meet the crew at a designated landing site. With this approach, the crew is able to evaluate the robotically collected samples to select the best samples for return to Earth to maximize the scientific value. The rovers can continue robotic exploration after the crew leaves the lunar surface. The transportation system for the dual launch mission architecture uses a lunar-orbit-rendezvous strategy. Two heavy lift launch vehicles depart from Earth within a six hour period to transport the lunar lander and crew elements separately to lunar orbit. In lunar orbit, the crew transfer vehicle docks with the lander and the crew boards the lander for descent to the surface. After the surface mission, the crew returns to the orbiting transfer vehicle for the return to the Earth. This

  14. Educational Robotics as Mindtools

    Mikropoulos, Tassos A.; Bellou, Ioanna


    Although there are many studies on the constructionist use of educational robotics, they have certain limitations. Some of them refer to robotics education, rather than educational robotics. Others follow a constructionist approach, but give emphasis only to design skills, creativity and collaboration. Some studies use robotics as an educational…

  15. ROILA : RObot Interaction LAnguage

    Mubin, O.


    The number of robots in our society is increasing rapidly. The number of service robots that interact with everyday people already outnumbers industrial robots. The easiest way to communicate with these service robots, such as Roomba or Nao, would be natural speech. However, the limitations

  16. Flight Plasma Diagnostics for High-Power, Solar-Electric Deep-Space Spacecraft

    Johnson, Lee; De Soria-Santacruz Pich, Maria; Conroy, David; Lobbia, Robert; Huang, Wensheng; Choi, Maria; Sekerak, Michael J.


    NASA's Asteroid Redirect Robotic Mission (ARRM) project plans included a set of plasma and space environment instruments, the Plasma Diagnostic Package (PDP), to fulfill ARRM requirements for technology extensibility to future missions. The PDP objectives were divided into the classes of 1) Plasma thruster dynamics, 2) Solar array-specific environmental effects, 3) Plasma environmental spacecraft effects, and 4) Energetic particle spacecraft environment. A reference design approach and interface requirements for ARRM's PDP was generated by the PDP team at JPL and GRC. The reference design consisted of redundant single-string avionics located on the ARRM spacecraft bus as well as solar array, driving and processing signals from multiple copies of several types of plasma, effects, and environments sensors distributed over the spacecraft and array. The reference design sensor types were derived in part from sensors previously developed for USAF Research Laboratory (AFRL) plasma effects campaigns such as those aboard TacSat-2 in 2007 and AEHF-2 in 2012.

  17. Robotic Hand


    The Omni-Hand was developed by Ross-Hime Designs, Inc. for Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) under a Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) contract. The multiple digit hand has an opposable thumb and a flexible wrist. Electric muscles called Minnacs power wrist joints and the interchangeable digits. Two hands have been delivered to NASA for evaluation for potential use on space missions and the unit is commercially available for applications like hazardous materials handling and manufacturing automation. Previous SBIR contracts resulted in the Omni-Wrist and Omni-Wrist II robotic systems, which are commercially available for spray painting, sealing, ultrasonic testing, as well as other uses.

  18. Synergistic Use of Spacecraft Telecom Links for Collection of Planetary Radar Science Data

    Asmar, S.; Bell, D. J.; Chahat, N. E.; Decrossas, E.; Dobreva, T.; Duncan, C.; Ellliot, H.; Jin, C.; Lazio, J.; Miller, J.; Preston, R.


    On multiple solar system missions, radar instruments have been used to probe subsurface geomorphology and to infer chemical composition based on the dielectric signature derived from the reflected signal. Example spacecraft radar instruments are the 90 MHz CONSERT radar used to probe the interior of Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko to a depth of 760m, the 20 MHz SHARAD instrument used to investigate Mars subsurface ice features from Mars orbit at depths of 300 to 3000 meters and the upcoming RIMFAX 150 MHz to 1200 MHz ground penetrating radar that will ride on the Mars 2020 rover investigating to a depth of 10m below the rover. In all of these applications, the radar frequency and signal structures were chosen to match science goals of desired depth of penetration and spatial resolution combined with the expected subsurface materials and structures below the surface. Recently, JPL investigators have proposed a new radar science paradigm, synergistic use of the telecom hardware and telecom links to collect bistatic or monostatic radar signatures. All JPL spacecraft employ telecom hardware that operates at UHF (400 MHz and 900 MHz), X-band (8 GHz) or Ka-band (32 GHz). Using existing open-loop record functions in these radios, the telecom hardware can be used to capture opportunistic radar signatures from telecom signals penetrating the surface and reflecting off of subsurface structures. This paper reports on telecom strategies, radar science applications and recent laboratory and field tests to demonstrate the effectiveness of telecom link based radar data collection.

  19. Modular Robotic Wearable

    Lund, Henrik Hautop; Pagliarini, Luigi


    In this concept paper we trace the contours and define a new approach to robotic systems, composed of interactive robotic modules which are somehow worn on the body. We label such a field as Modular Robotic Wearable (MRW). We describe how, by using modular robotics for creating wearable....... Finally, by focusing on the intersection of the combination modular robotic systems, wearability, and bodymind we attempt to explore the theoretical characteristics of such approach and exploit the possible playware application fields....

  20. Lunar Surface Scenarios: Habitation and Life Support Systems for a Pressurized Rover

    Anderson, Molly; Hanford, Anthony; Howard, Robert; Toups, Larry


    Pressurized rovers will be a critical component of successful lunar exploration to enable safe investigation of sites distant from the outpost location. A pressurized rover is a complex system with the same functions as any other crewed vehicle. Designs for a pressurized rover need to take into account significant constraints, a multitude of tasks to be performed inside and out, and the complexity of life support systems to support the crew. In future studies, pressurized rovers should be given the same level of consideration as any other vehicle occupied by the crew.

  1. Hexapod Robot

    Begody, Ericka


    The project I am working on at NASA-Johnson Space Center in Houston, TX is a hexapod robot. This project was started by various engineers at the Trick Lab. The goal of this project is to have the hexapod track a yellow ball or possibly another object from left to right and up/down. The purpose is to have it track an object like a real creature. The project will consist of using software and hardware. This project started with a hexapod robot which uses a senor bar to track a yellow ball but with a limited field of vision. The sensor bar acts as the robots "head." Two servos will be added to the hexapod to create flexion and extension of the head. The neck and head servos will have to be programmed to be added to the original memory map of the existing servos. I will be using preexisting code. The main programming language that will be used to add to the preexisting code is C++. The trick modeling and simulation software will also be used in the process to improve its tracking and movement. This project will use a trial and error approach, basically seeing what works and what does not. The first step is to initially understand how the hexapod works. To get a general understanding of how the hexapod maneuvers and plan on how to had a neck and head servo which works with the rest of the body. The second step would be configuring the head and neck servos with the leg servos. During this step, limits will be programmed specifically for the each servo. By doing this, the servo is limited to how far it can rotate both clockwise and counterclockwise and this is to prevent hardware damage. The hexapod will have two modes in which it works in. The first mode will be if the sensor bar does not detect an object. If the object it is programmed to look for is not in its view it will automatically scan from left to right 3 times then up and down once. The second mode will be if the sensor bar does detect the object. In this mode the hexapod will track the object from left to

  2. ExoGeoLab Pilot Project for Landers, Rovers and Instruments

    Foing, Bernard


    We have developed a pilot facility with a Robotic Test Bench (ExoGeoLab) and a Mobile Lab Habitat (ExoHab). They can be used to validate concepts and external instruments from partner institutes. The ExoGeoLab research incubator project, has started in the frame of a collaboration between ILEWG (International Lunar Exploration working Group, ESTEC, NASA and academic partners, supported by a design and control desk in the European Space Incubator (ESI), as well as infrastructure. ExoGeoLab includes a sequence of technology and research pilot project activities: - Data analysis and interpretation of remote sensing and in-situ data, and merging of multi-scale data sets - Procurement and integration of geophysical, geo-chemical and astrobiological breadboard instruments on a surface station and rovers - Integration of cameras, environment and solar sensors, Visible and near IR spectrometer, Raman spectrometer, sample handling, cooperative rovers - Delivery of a generic small planetary lander demonstrator (ExoGeoLab lander, Sept 2009) as a platform for multi-instruments tests - Research operations and exploitation of ExoGeoLab test bench for various conceptual configurations, and support for definition and design of science surface packages (Moon, Mars, NEOs, outer moons) - Field tests of lander, rovers and instruments in analogue sites (Utah MDRS 2009 & 2010, Eifel volcanic park in Sept 2009, and future campaigns). Co-authors, ILEWG ExoGeoLab & ExoHab Team: B.H. Foing(1,11)*#, C. Stoker(2,11)*, P. Ehrenfreund(10,11), L. Boche-Sauvan(1,11)*, L. Wendt(8)*, C. Gross(8, 11)*, C. Thiel(9)*, S. Peters(1,6)*, A. Borst(1,6)*, J. Zavaleta(2)*, P. Sarrazin(2)*, D. Blake(2), J. Page(1,4,11), V. Pletser(5,11)*, E. Monaghan(1)*, P. Mahapatra(1)#, A. Noroozi(3), P. Giannopoulos(1,11) , A. Calzada(1,6,11), R. Walker(7), T. Zegers(1, 15) #, G. Groemer(12)# , W. Stumptner(12)#, B. Foing(2,5), J. K. Blom(3)#, A. Perrin(14)#, M. Mikolajczak(14)#, S. Chevrier(14

  3. Artist concept of Galileo spacecraft


    Galileo spacecraft is illustrated in artist concept. Gallileo, named for the Italian astronomer, physicist and mathematician who is credited with construction of the first complete, practical telescope in 1620, will make detailed studies of Jupiter. A cooperative program with the Federal Republic of Germany the Galileo mission will amplify information acquired by two Voyager spacecraft in their brief flybys. Galileo is a two-element system that includes a Jupiter-orbiting observatory and an entry probe. Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) is Galileo project manager and builder of the main spacecraft. Ames Research Center (ARC) has responsibility for the entry probe, which was built by Hughes Aircraft Company and General Electric. Galileo will be deployed from the payload bay (PLB) of Atlantis, Orbiter Vehicle (OV) 104, during mission STS-34.

  4. Panoramic 3d Vision on the ExoMars Rover

    Paar, G.; Griffiths, A. D.; Barnes, D. P.; Coates, A. J.; Jaumann, R.; Oberst, J.; Gao, Y.; Ellery, A.; Li, R.

    The Pasteur payload on the ESA ExoMars Rover 2011/2013 is designed to search for evidence of extant or extinct life either on or up to ˜2 m below the surface of Mars. The rover will be equipped by a panoramic imaging system to be developed by a UK, German, Austrian, Swiss, Italian and French team for visual characterization of the rover's surroundings and (in conjunction with an infrared imaging spectrometer) remote detection of potential sample sites. The Panoramic Camera system consists of a wide angle multispectral stereo pair with 65° field-of-view (WAC; 1.1 mrad/pixel) and a high resolution monoscopic camera (HRC; current design having 59.7 µrad/pixel with 3.5° field-of-view) . Its scientific goals and operational requirements can be summarized as follows: • Determination of objects to be investigated in situ by other instruments for operations planning • Backup and Support for the rover visual navigation system (path planning, determination of subsequent rover positions and orientation/tilt within the 3d environment), and localization of the landing site (by stellar navigation or by combination of orbiter and ground panoramic images) • Geological characterization (using narrow band geology filters) and cartography of the local environments (local Digital Terrain Model or DTM). • Study of atmospheric properties and variable phenomena near the Martian surface (e.g. aerosol opacity, water vapour column density, clouds, dust devils, meteors, surface frosts,) 1 • Geodetic studies (observations of Sun, bright stars, Phobos/Deimos). The performance of 3d data processing is a key element of mission planning and scientific data analysis. The 3d Vision Team within the Panoramic Camera development Consortium reports on the current status of development, consisting of the following items: • Hardware Layout & Engineering: The geometric setup of the system (location on the mast & viewing angles, mutual mounting between WAC and HRC) needs to be optimized w

  5. PDS MSL Analyst's Notebook: Supporting Active Rover Missions and Adding Value to Planetary Data Archives

    Stein, Thomas

    Planetary data archives of surface missions contain data from numerous hosted instruments. Because of the nondeterministic nature of surface missions, it is not possible to assess the data without understanding the context in which they were collected. The PDS Analyst’s Notebook ( provides access to Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) data archives by integrating sequence information, engineering and science data, observation planning and targeting, and documentation into web-accessible pages to facilitate “mission replay.” In addition, Mars Exploration Rover (MER), Mars Phoenix Lander, Lunar Apollo surface mission, and LCROSS mission data are available in the Analyst’s Notebook concept, and a Notebook is planned for the Insight mission. The MSL Analyst’s Notebook contains data, documentation, and support files for the Curiosity rovers. The inputs are incorporated on a daily basis into a science team version of the Notebook. The public version of the Analyst’s Notebook is comprised of peer-reviewed, released data and is updated coincident with PDS data releases as defined in mission archive plans. The data are provided by the instrument teams and are supported by documentation describing data format, content, and calibration. Both operations and science data products are included. The operations versions are generated to support mission planning and operations on a daily basis. They are geared toward researchers working on machine vision and engineering operations. Science versions of observations from some instruments are provided for those interested in radiometric and photometric analyses. Both data set documentation and sol (i.e., Mars day) documents are included in the Notebook. The sol documents are the mission manager and documentarian reports that provide a view into science operations—insight into why and how particular observations were made. Data set documents contain detailed information regarding the mission, spacecraft

  6. Next generation light robotic

    Villangca, Mark Jayson; Palima, Darwin; Banas, Andrew Rafael


    -assisted surgery imbibes surgeons with superhuman abilities and gives the expression “surgical precision” a whole new meaning. Still in its infancy, much remains to be done to improve human-robot collaboration both in realizing robots that can operate safely with humans and in training personnel that can work......Conventional robotics provides machines and robots that can replace and surpass human performance in repetitive, difficult, and even dangerous tasks at industrial assembly lines, hazardous environments, or even at remote planets. A new class of robotic systems no longer aims to replace humans...... with so-called automatons but, rather, to create robots that can work alongside human operators. These new robots are intended to collaborate with humans—extending their abilities—from assisting workers on the factory floor to rehabilitating patients in their homes. In medical robotics, robot...

  7. Distributed Robotics Education

    Lund, Henrik Hautop; Pagliarini, Luigi


    Distributed robotics takes many forms, for instance, multirobots, modular robots, and self-reconfigurable robots. The understanding and development of such advanced robotic systems demand extensive knowledge in engineering and computer science. In this paper, we describe the concept of a distribu......Distributed robotics takes many forms, for instance, multirobots, modular robots, and self-reconfigurable robots. The understanding and development of such advanced robotic systems demand extensive knowledge in engineering and computer science. In this paper, we describe the concept...... to be changed, related to multirobot control and human-robot interaction control from virtual to physical representation. The proposed system is valuable for bringing a vast number of issues into education – such as parallel programming, distribution, communication protocols, master dependency, connectivity...

  8. An Adaptive Robot Game

    Hansen, Søren Tranberg; Svenstrup, Mikael; Dalgaard, Lars


    The goal of this paper is to describe an adaptive robot game, which motivates elderly people to do a regular amount of physical exercise while playing. One of the advantages of robot based games is that the initiative to play can be taken autonomously by the robot. In this case, the goal is to im......The goal of this paper is to describe an adaptive robot game, which motivates elderly people to do a regular amount of physical exercise while playing. One of the advantages of robot based games is that the initiative to play can be taken autonomously by the robot. In this case, the goal...... is to improve the mental and physical state of the user by playing a physical game with the robot. Ideally, a robot game should be simple to learn but difficult to master, providing an appropriate degree of challenge for players with different skills. In order to achieve that, the robot should be able to adapt...

  9. Robotic intelligence kernel

    Bruemmer, David J [Idaho Falls, ID


    A robot platform includes perceptors, locomotors, and a system controller. The system controller executes a robot intelligence kernel (RIK) that includes a multi-level architecture and a dynamic autonomy structure. The multi-level architecture includes a robot behavior level for defining robot behaviors, that incorporate robot attributes and a cognitive level for defining conduct modules that blend an adaptive interaction between predefined decision functions and the robot behaviors. The dynamic autonomy structure is configured for modifying a transaction capacity between an operator intervention and a robot initiative and may include multiple levels with at least a teleoperation mode configured to maximize the operator intervention and minimize the robot initiative and an autonomous mode configured to minimize the operator intervention and maximize the robot initiative. Within the RIK at least the cognitive level includes the dynamic autonomy structure.

  10. Robotic membranes

    Ramsgaard Thomsen, Mette


    The relationship between digital and analogue is often constructed as one of opposition. The perception that the world is permeated with underlying patterns of data, describing events and matter alike, suggests that information can be understood apart from the substance to which it is associated......, and that its encoded logic can be constructed and reconfigured as an isolated entity. This disembodiment of information from materiality implies that an event like a thunderstorm, or a material like a body, can be described equally by data, in other words it can be read or written. The following prototypes......, Vivisection and Strange Metabolisms, were developed at the Centre for Information Technology and Architecture (CITA) at the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts in Copenhagen as a means of engaging intangible digital data with tactile physical material. As robotic membranes, they are a dual examination...

  11. Training for spacecraft technical analysts

    Ayres, Thomas J.; Bryant, Larry


    Deep space missions such as Voyager rely upon a large team of expert analysts who monitor activity in the various engineering subsystems of the spacecraft and plan operations. Senior teammembers generally come from the spacecraft designers, and new analysts receive on-the-job training. Neither of these methods will suffice for the creation of a new team in the middle of a mission, which may be the situation during the Magellan mission. New approaches are recommended, including electronic documentation, explicit cognitive modeling, and coached practice with archived data.

  12. Results from active spacecraft potential control on the Geotail spacecraft

    Schmidt, R.; Arends, H.; Pedersen, A.


    A low and actively controlled electrostatic potential on the outer surfaces of a scientific spacecraft is very important for accurate measurements of cold plasma electrons and ions and the DC to low-frequency electric field. The Japanese/NASA Geotail spacecraft carriers as part of its scientific payload a novel ion emitter for active control of the electrostatic potential on the surface of the spacecraft. The aim of the ion emitter is to reduce the positive surface potential which is normally encountered in the outer magnetosphere when the spacecraft is sunlit. Ion emission clamps the surface potential to near the ambient plasma potential. Without emission control, Geotail has encountered plasma conditions in the lobes of the magnetotail which resulted in surface potentials of up to about +70 V. The ion emitter proves to be able to discharge the outer surfaces of the spacecraft and is capable of keeping the surface potential stable at about +2 V. This potential is measured with respect to one of the electric field probes which are current biased and thus kept at a potential slightly above the ambient plasma potential. The instrument uses the liquid metal field ion emission principle to emit indium ions. The ion beam energy is about 6 keV and the typical total emission current amounts to about 15 μA. Neither variations in the ambient plasma conditions nor operation of two electron emitters on Geotail produce significant variations of the controlled surface potential as long as the resulting electron emission currents remain much smaller than the ion emission current. Typical results of the active potential control are shown, demonstrating the surface potential reduction and its stability over time. 25 refs., 5 figs

  13. Artificial Neural Network Based Mission Planning Mechanism for Spacecraft

    Li, Zhaoyu; Xu, Rui; Cui, Pingyuan; Zhu, Shengying


    The ability to plan and react fast in dynamic space environments is central to intelligent behavior of spacecraft. For space and robotic applications, many planners have been used. But it is difficult to encode the domain knowledge and directly use existing techniques such as heuristic to improve the performance of the application systems. Therefore, regarding planning as an advanced control problem, this paper first proposes an autonomous mission planning and action selection mechanism through a multiple layer perceptron neural network approach to select actions in planning process and improve efficiency. To prove the availability and effectiveness, we use autonomous mission planning problems of the spacecraft, which is a sophisticated system with complex subsystems and constraints as an example. Simulation results have shown that artificial neural networks (ANNs) are usable for planning problems. Compared with the existing planning method in EUROPA, the mechanism using ANNs is more efficient and can guarantee stable performance. Therefore, the mechanism proposed in this paper is more suitable for planning problems of spacecraft that require real time and stability.

  14. Robotics Potential Fields

    Jordi Lucero


    Full Text Available This problem was to calculate the path a robot would take to navigate an obstacle field and get to its goal. Three obstacles were given as negative potential fields which the robot avoided, and a goal was given a positive potential field that attracted the robot. The robot decided each step based on its distance, angle, and influence from every object. After each step, the robot recalculated and determined its next step until it reached its goal. The robot's calculations and steps were simulated with Microsoft Excel.

  15. Designing Emotionally Expressive Robots

    Tsiourti, Christiana; Weiss, Astrid; Wac, Katarzyna


    Socially assistive agents, be it virtual avatars or robots, need to engage in social interactions with humans and express their internal emotional states, goals, and desires. In this work, we conducted a comparative study to investigate how humans perceive emotional cues expressed by humanoid...... robots through five communication modalities (face, head, body, voice, locomotion) and examined whether the degree of a robot's human-like embodiment affects this perception. In an online survey, we asked people to identify emotions communicated by Pepper -a highly human-like robot and Hobbit – a robot...... for robots....

  16. Soviet Robots in the Solar System Mission Technologies and Discoveries

    Huntress, JR , Wesley T


    The Soviet robotic space exploration program began in a spirit of bold adventure and technical genius. It ended after the fall of the Soviet Union and the failure of its last mission to Mars in 1996. Soviet Robots in the Solar System chronicles the scientific and engineering accomplishments of this enterprise from its infancy to its demise. Each flight campaign is set into context of national politics and international competition with the United States. Together with its many detailed illustrations and images, Soviet Robots in the Solar System presents the most detailed technical description of Soviet robotic space flights provides a unique insight into programmatic, engineering, and scientific issues covers mission objectives, spacecraft engineering, flight details, scientific payload and results describes in technical depth Soviet lunar and planetary probes

  17. Advanced mechanics in robotic systems

    Nava Rodríguez, Nestor Eduardo


    Illustrates original and ambitious mechanical designs and techniques for the development of new robot prototypes Includes numerous figures, tables and flow charts Discusses relevant applications in robotics fields such as humanoid robots, robotic hands, mobile robots, parallel manipulators and human-centred robots

  18. Radiation shield analysis for a manned Mars rover

    Morley, N.J.; ElGenk, M.S.


    Radiation shielding for unmanned space missions has been extensively studied; however, designs of man-rated shields are minimal. Engle et al.'s analysis of a man-rated, multilayered shield composed of two and three cycles (a cycle consists of a tungsten and a lithium hydride layer) is the basis for the work reported in this paper. The authors present the results of a recent study of shield designs for a manned Mars rover powered by a 500-kW(thermal) nuclear reactor. A train-type rover vehicle was developed, which consists of four cars and is powered by an SP-100-type nuclear reactor heat source. The maximum permissible dose rate (MPD) from all sources is given by the National Council on Radiation Protection and Measurements as 500 mSv/yr (50 rem/yr) A 3-yr Mars mission (2-yr round trip and 1-yr stay) will deliver a 1-Sv natural radiation dose without a solar particle event, 450 mSv/yr in flight, and an additional 100 mSv on the planet surface. An anomalously large solar particle event could increase the natural radiation dose for unshielded astronauts on the Martian surface to 200 mSv. This limits the MPD to crew members from the nuclear reactor to 300 mSv

  19. Charging in the environment of large spacecraft

    Lai, S.T.


    This paper discusses some potential problems of spacecraft charging as a result of interactions between a large spacecraft, such as the Space Station, and its environment. Induced electric field, due to VXB effect, may be important for large spacecraft at low earth orbits. Differential charging, due to different properties of surface materials, may be significant when the spacecraft is partly in sunshine and partly in shadow. Triple-root potential jump condition may occur because of differential charging. Sudden onset of severe differential charging may occur when an electron or ion beam is emitted from the spacecraft. The beam may partially return to the ''hot spots'' on the spacecraft. Wake effects, due to blocking of ambient ion trajectories, may result in an undesirable negative potential region in the vicinity of a large spacecraft. Outgassing and exhaust may form a significant spacecraft induced environment; ionization may occur. Spacecraft charging and discharging may affect the electronic components on board

  20. Autonomously Generating Operations Sequences for a Mars Rover Using Artificial Intelligence-Based Planning

    Sherwood, R.; Mutz, D.; Estlin, T.; Chien, S.; Backes, P.; Norris, J.; Tran, D.; Cooper, B.; Rabideau, G.; Mishkin, A.; Maxwell, S.


    This article discusses a proof-of-concept prototype for ground-based automatic generation of validated rover command sequences from high-level science and engineering activities. This prototype is based on ASPEN, the Automated Scheduling and Planning Environment. This artificial intelligence (AI)-based planning and scheduling system will automatically generate a command sequence that will execute within resource constraints and satisfy flight rules. An automated planning and scheduling system encodes rover design knowledge and uses search and reasoning techniques to automatically generate low-level command sequences while respecting rover operability constraints, science and engineering preferences, environmental predictions, and also adhering to hard temporal constraints. This prototype planning system has been field-tested using the Rocky 7 rover at JPL and will be field-tested on more complex rovers to prove its effectiveness before transferring the technology to flight operations for an upcoming NASA mission. Enabling goal-driven commanding of planetary rovers greatly reduces the requirements for highly skilled rover engineering personnel. This in turn greatly reduces mission operations costs. In addition, goal-driven commanding permits a faster response to changes in rover state (e.g., faults) or science discoveries by removing the time-consuming manual sequence validation process, allowing rapid "what-if" analyses, and thus reducing overall cycle times.

  1. RAT magnet experiment on the Mars Exploration Rovers: Spirit and Opportunity beyond sol 500

    Leer, Kristoffer; Goetz, Walter; Chan, Marjorie A.


    The Rock Abrasion Tool (RAT) magnet experiment on the Mars Exploration Rovers was designed to collect dust from rocks ground by the RAT of the two rovers on the surface of Mars. The dust collected on the magnets is now a mixture of dust from many grindings. Here the new data from the experiment...

  2. Airborne particulate matter in spacecraft


    Acceptability limits and sampling and monitoring strategies for airborne particles in spacecraft were considered. Based on instances of eye and respiratory tract irritation reported by Shuttle flight crews, the following acceptability limits for airborne particles were recommended: for flights of 1 week or less duration (1 mg/cu m for particles less than 10 microns in aerodynamic diameter (AD) plus 1 mg/cu m for particles 10 to 100 microns in AD); and for flights greater than 1 week and up to 6 months in duration (0.2 mg/cu m for particles less than 10 microns in AD plus 0.2 mg/cu m for particles 10 to 100 microns in AD. These numerical limits were recommended to aid in spacecraft atmosphere design which should aim at particulate levels that are a low as reasonably achievable. Sampling of spacecraft atmospheres for particles should include size-fractionated samples of 0 to 10, 10 to 100, and greater than 100 micron particles for mass concentration measurement and elementary chemical analysis by nondestructive analysis techniques. Morphological and chemical analyses of single particles should also be made to aid in identifying airborne particulate sources. Air cleaning systems based on inertial collection principles and fine particle collection devices based on electrostatic precipitation and filtration should be considered for incorporation into spacecraft air circulation systems. It was also recommended that research be carried out in space in the areas of health effects and particle characterization.

  3. Robots Social Embodiment in Autonomous Mobile Robotics

    Brian Duffy


    Full Text Available This work aims at demonstrating the inherent advantages of embracing a strong notion of social embodiment in designing a real-world robot control architecture with explicit ?intelligent? social behaviour between a collective of robots. It develops the current thinking on embodiment beyond the physical by demonstrating the importance of social embodiment. A social framework develops the fundamental social attributes found when more than one robot co-inhabit a physical space. The social metaphors of identity, character, stereotypes and roles are presented and implemented within a real-world social robot paradigm in order to facilitate the realisation of explicit social goals.

  4. Non-Detection of Methane in the Mars Atmosphere by the Curiosity Rover

    Webster, Chris R.; Mahaffy, Paul R.; Atreya, Sushil K.; Flesch, Gregory J.; Farley, Kenneth A.


    By analogy with Earth, methane in the atmosphere of Mars is a potential signature of ongoing or past biological activity on the planet. During the last decade, Earth-based telescopic and Mars orbit remote sensing instruments have reported significant abundances of methane in the Martian atmosphere ranging from several to tens of parts-per-billion by volume (ppbv). Observations from Earth showed plumes of methane with variations on timescales much faster than expected and inconsistent with localized patches seen from orbit, prompting speculation of sources from sub-surface methanogen bacteria, geological water-rock reactions or infall from comets, micro-meteorites or interplanetary dust. From measurements on NASAs Curiosity Rover that landed near Gale Crater on 5th August 2012, we here report no definitive detection of methane in the near-surface Martian atmosphere. Our in situ measurements were made using the Tunable Laser Spectrometer (TLS) in the Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument suite6 that made three separate searches on Martian sols 79, 81 and 106 after landing. The measured mean value of 0.39 plus or minus 1.4 ppbv corresponds to an upper limit for methane abundance of 2.7 ppbv at the 95 confidence level. This result is in disagreement with both the remote sensing spacecraft observations taken at lower sensitivity and the telescopic observations that relied on subtraction of a very large contribution from terrestrial methane in the intervening observation path. Since the expected lifetime of methane in the Martian atmosphere is hundreds of years, our results question earlier observations and set a low upper limit on the present day abundance, reducing the probability of significant current methanogenic microbial activity on Mars.

  5. Springer handbook of robotics

    Khatib, Oussama


    The second edition of this handbook provides a state-of-the-art cover view on the various aspects in the rapidly developing field of robotics. Reaching for the human frontier, robotics is vigorously engaged in the growing challenges of new emerging domains. Interacting, exploring, and working with humans, the new generation of robots will increasingly touch people and their lives. The credible prospect of practical robots among humans is the result of the scientific endeavour of a half a century of robotic developments that established robotics as a modern scientific discipline. The ongoing vibrant expansion and strong growth of the field during the last decade has fueled this second edition of the Springer Handbook of Robotics. The first edition of the handbook soon became a landmark in robotics publishing and won the American Association of Publishers PROSE Award for Excellence in Physical Sciences & Mathematics as well as the organization’s Award for Engineering & Technology. The second edition o...

  6. Project ROBOTICS 2008

    Conrad, Finn

    Mathematical modelling of Alto Robot, direct- and inverse kinematic transformation,simulation and path control applying MATLAB/SIMULINK.......Mathematical modelling of Alto Robot, direct- and inverse kinematic transformation,simulation and path control applying MATLAB/SIMULINK....

  7. Project Tasks in Robotics

    Sørensen, Torben; Hansen, Poul Erik


    Description of the compulsary project tasks to be carried out as a part of DTU course 72238 Robotics......Description of the compulsary project tasks to be carried out as a part of DTU course 72238 Robotics...

  8. RHOBOT: Radiation hardened robotics

    Bennett, P.C.; Posey, L.D. [Sandia National Labs., Albuquerque, NM (United States)


    A survey of robotic applications in radioactive environments has been conducted, and analysis of robotic system components and their response to the varying types and strengths of radiation has been completed. Two specific robotic systems for accident recovery and nuclear fuel movement have been analyzed in detail for radiation hardness. Finally, a general design approach for radiation-hardened robotics systems has been developed and is presented. This report completes this project which was funded under the Laboratory Directed Research and Development program.

  9. Micro robot bible

    Yoon, Jin Yeong


    This book deals with micro robot, which tells of summary of robots like entertainment robots and definition of robots, introduction of micro mouse about history, composition and rules, summary of micro controller with its history, appearance and composition, introduction of stepping motor about types, structure, basic characteristics, and driving ways, summary of sensor section, power, understanding of 80C196KC micro controller, basic driving program searching a maze algorithm, smooth turn and making of tracer line.

  10. RHOBOT: Radiation hardened robotics

    Bennett, P.C.; Posey, L.D.


    A survey of robotic applications in radioactive environments has been conducted, and analysis of robotic system components and their response to the varying types and strengths of radiation has been completed. Two specific robotic systems for accident recovery and nuclear fuel movement have been analyzed in detail for radiation hardness. Finally, a general design approach for radiation-hardened robotics systems has been developed and is presented. This report completes this project which was funded under the Laboratory Directed Research and Development program

  11. Two Legged Walking Robot

    Kraus, V.


    The aim of this work is to construct a two-legged wirelessly controlled walking robot. This paper describes the construction of the robot, its control electronics, and the solution of the wireless control. The article also includes a description of the application to control the robot. The control electronics of the walking robot are built using the development kit Arduino Mega, which is enhanced with WiFi module allowing the wireless control, a set of ultrasonic sensors for detecting obstacl...

  12. Micro robot bible

    Yoon, Jin Yeong


    This book deals with micro robot, which tells of summary of robots like entertainment robots and definition of robots, introduction of micro mouse about history, composition and rules, summary of micro controller with its history, appearance and composition, introduction of stepping motor about types, structure, basic characteristics, and driving ways, summary of sensor section, power, understanding of 80C196KC micro controller, basic driving program searching a maze algorithm, smooth turn and making of tracer line.

  13. Robots at Work

    Graetz, Georg; Michaels, Guy


    Despite ubiquitous discussions of robots' potential impact, there is almost no systematic empirical evidence on their economic effects. In this paper we analyze for the first time the economic impact of industrial robots, using new data on a panel of industries in 17 countries from 1993-2007. We find that industrial robots increased both labor productivity and value added. Our panel identification is robust to numerous controls, and we find similar results instrumenting increased robot use wi...

  14. Robots in the Roses


    2014-04 Robots in the Roses A CRUSER Sponsored Event. The 4th Annual Robots in the Roses provides a venue for Faculty & NPS Students to showcase unmanned systems research (current or completed) and recruit NPS Students to join in researching on your project. Posters, robots, vehicles, videos, and even just plain humans welcome! Families are welcome to attend Robots in the Roses as we'll have a STEM activity for children to participate in.

  15. Modular robot

    Ferrante, T.A.


    A modular robot may comprise a main body having a structure defined by a plurality of stackable modules. The stackable modules may comprise a manifold, a valve module, and a control module. The manifold may comprise a top surface and a bottom surface having a plurality of fluid passages contained therein, at least one of the plurality of fluid passages terminating in a valve port located on the bottom surface of the manifold. The valve module is removably connected to the manifold and selectively fluidically connects the plurality of fluid passages contained in the manifold to a supply of pressurized fluid and to a vent. The control module is removably connected to the valve module and actuates the valve module to selectively control a flow of pressurized fluid through different ones of the plurality of fluid passages in the manifold. The manifold, valve module, and control module are mounted together in a sandwich-like manner and comprise a main body. A plurality of leg assemblies are removably connected to the main body and are removably fluidically connected to the fluid passages in the manifold so that each of the leg assemblies can be selectively actuated by the flow of pressurized fluid in different ones of the plurality of fluid passages in the manifold. 12 figs

  16. Diversity of anaerobic microbes in spacecraft assembly clean rooms.

    Probst, Alexander; Vaishampayan, Parag; Osman, Shariff; Moissl-Eichinger, Christine; Andersen, Gary L; Venkateswaran, Kasthuri


    Although the cultivable and noncultivable microbial diversity of spacecraft assembly clean rooms has been previously documented using conventional and state-of-the-art molecular techniques, the occurrence of obligate anaerobes within these clean rooms is still uncertain. Therefore, anaerobic bacterial communities of three clean-room facilities were analyzed during assembly of the Mars Science Laboratory rover. Anaerobic bacteria were cultured on several media, and DNA was extracted from suitable anaerobic enrichments and examined with conventional 16S rRNA gene clone library, as well as high-density phylogenetic 16S rRNA gene microarray (PhyloChip) technologies. The culture-dependent analyses predominantly showed the presence of clostridial and propionibacterial strains. The 16S rRNA gene sequences retrieved from clone libraries revealed distinct microbial populations associated with each clean-room facility, clustered exclusively within gram-positive organisms. PhyloChip analysis detected a greater microbial diversity, spanning many phyla of bacteria, and provided a deeper insight into the microbial community structure of the clean-room facilities. This study presents an integrated approach for assessing the anaerobic microbial population within clean-room facilities, using both molecular and cultivation-based analyses. The results reveal that highly diverse anaerobic bacterial populations persist in the clean rooms even after the imposition of rigorous maintenance programs and will pose a challenge to planetary protection implementation activities.

  17. Robot 2015 : Second Iberian Robotics Conference : Advances in Robotics

    Moreira, António; Lima, Pedro; Montano, Luis; Muñoz-Martinez, Victor


    This book contains a selection of papers accepted for presentation and discussion at ROBOT 2015: Second Iberian Robotics Conference, held in Lisbon, Portugal, November 19th-21th, 2015. ROBOT 2015 is part of a series of conferences that are a joint organization of SPR – “Sociedade Portuguesa de Robótica/ Portuguese Society for Robotics”, SEIDROB – Sociedad Española para la Investigación y Desarrollo de la Robótica/ Spanish Society for Research and Development in Robotics and CEA-GTRob – Grupo Temático de Robótica/ Robotics Thematic Group. The conference organization had also the collaboration of several universities and research institutes, including: University of Minho, University of Porto, University of Lisbon, Polytechnic Institute of Porto, University of Aveiro, University of Zaragoza, University of Malaga, LIACC, INESC-TEC and LARSyS. Robot 2015 was focussed on the Robotics scientific and technological activities in the Iberian Peninsula, although open to research and delegates from other...

  18. Building a Better Robot

    Navah, Jan


    Kids love to build robots, letting their imaginations run wild with thoughts of what they might look like and what they could be programmed to do. Yet when students use cereal boxes and found objects to make robots, often the projects look too similar and tend to fall apart. This alternative allows students to "build" robots in a different way,…

  19. Open middleware for robotics

    Namoshe, M


    Full Text Available and their technologies within the field of multi-robot systems to ease the difficulty of realizing robot applications. And lastly, an example of algorithm development for multi-robot co-operation using one of the discussed software architecture is presented...

  20. Learning robotics using Python

    Joseph, Lentin


    If you are an engineer, a researcher, or a hobbyist, and you are interested in robotics and want to build your own robot, this book is for you. Readers are assumed to be new to robotics but should have experience with Python.

  1. Robots de servicio

    Rafael Aracil


    Full Text Available Resumen: El término Robots de Servicio apareció a finales de los años 80 como una necesidad de desarrollar máquinas y sistemas capaces de trabajar en entornos diferentes a los fabriles. Los Robots de Servicio tenían que poder trabajar en entornos noestructurados, en condiciones ambientales cambiantes y con una estrecha interacción con los humanos. En 1995 fue creado por la IEEE Robotics and Automation Society, el Technical Committee on Service Robots, y este comité definió en el año 2000 las áreas de aplicación de los Robots de Servicios, que se pueden dividir en dos grandes grupos: 1 sectores productivos no manufactureros tales como edificación, agricultura, naval, minería, medicina, etc. y 2 sectores de servicios propiamente dichos: asistencia personal, limpieza, vigilancia, educación, entretenimiento, etc. En este trabajo se hace una breve revisión de los principales conceptos y aplicaciones de los robots de servicio. Palabras clave: Robots de servicio, robots autónomos, robots de exteriores, robots de educación y entretenimiento, robots caminantes y escaladores, robots humanoides

  2. Beyond Speculative Robot Ethics

    Smits, M.; Van der Plas, A.


    In this article we develop a dialogue model for robot technology experts and designated users to discuss visions on the future of robotics in long-term care. Our vision assessment study aims for more distinguished and more informed visions on future robots. Surprisingly, our experiment also lead to

  3. Robotic hand and fingers

    Salisbury, Curt Michael; Dullea, Kevin J.


    Technologies pertaining to a robotic hand are described herein. The robotic hand includes one or more fingers releasably attached to a robotic hand frame. The fingers can abduct and adduct as well as flex and tense. The fingers are releasably attached to the frame by magnets that allow for the fingers to detach from the frame when excess force is applied to the fingers.

  4. Quick Spacecraft Thermal Analysis Tool, Phase II

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — For spacecraft design and development teams concerned with cost and schedule, the Quick Spacecraft Thermal Analysis Tool (QuickSTAT) is an innovative software suite...

  5. Multiple spacecraft Michelson stellar interferometer

    Stachnik, R. V.; Arnold, D.; Melroy, P.; Mccormack, E. F.; Gezari, D. Y.


    Results of an orbital analysis and performance assessment of SAMSI (Spacecraft Array for Michelson Spatial Interferometry) are presented. The device considered includes two one-meter telescopes in orbits which are identical except for slightly different inclinations; the telescopes achieve separations as large as 10 km and relay starlight to a central station which has a one-meter optical delay line in one interferometer arm. It is shown that a 1000-km altitude, zero mean inclination orbit affords natural scanning of the 10-km baseline with departures from optical pathlength equality which are well within the corrective capacity of the optical delay line. Electric propulsion is completely adequate to provide the required spacecraft motions, principally those needed for repointing. Resolution of 0.00001 arcsec and magnitude limits of 15 to 20 are achievable.

  6. Spacecraft Tests of General Relativity

    Anderson, John D.


    Current spacecraft tests of general relativity depend on coherent radio tracking referred to atomic frequency standards at the ground stations. This paper addresses the possibility of improved tests using essentially the current system, but with the added possibility of a space-borne atomic clock. Outside of the obvious measurement of the gravitational frequency shift of the spacecraft clock, a successor to the suborbital flight of a Scout D rocket in 1976 (GP-A Project), other metric tests would benefit most directly by a possible improved sensitivity for the reduced coherent data. For purposes of illustration, two possible missions are discussed. The first is a highly eccentric Earth orbiter, and the second a solar-conjunction experiment to measure the Shapiro time delay using coherent Doppler data instead of the conventional ranging modulation.

  7. Attitude Fusion Techniques for Spacecraft

    Bjarnø, Jonas Bækby

    Spacecraft platform instability constitutes one of the most significant limiting factors in hyperacuity pointing and tracking applications, yet the demand for accurate, timely and reliable attitude information is ever increasing. The PhD research project described within this dissertation has...... served to investigate the solution space for augmenting the DTU μASC stellar reference sensor with a miniature Inertial Reference Unit (IRU), thereby obtaining improved bandwidth, accuracy and overall operational robustness of the fused instrument. Present day attitude determination requirements are met...... of the instrument, and affecting operations during agile and complex spacecraft attitude maneuvers. As such, there exists a theoretical foundation for augmenting the high frequency performance of the μASC instrument, by harnessing the complementary nature of optical stellar reference and inertial sensor technology...

  8. Autonomous spacecraft rendezvous and docking

    Tietz, J. C.; Almand, B. J.

    A storyboard display is presented which summarizes work done recently in design and simulation of autonomous video rendezvous and docking systems for spacecraft. This display includes: photographs of the simulation hardware, plots of chase vehicle trajectories from simulations, pictures of the docking aid including image processing interpretations, and drawings of the control system strategy. Viewgraph-style sheets on the display bulletin board summarize the simulation objectives, benefits, special considerations, approach, and results.

  9. Nonlinearity-induced spacecraft tumbling

    Amos, A.K.


    An existing tumbling criterion for the dumbbell satellite in planar librations is reexamined and modified to reflect a recently identified tumbling mode associated with the horizontal attitude orientation. It is shown that for any initial attitude there exists a critical angular rate below which the motion is oscillatory and harmonic and beyond which a continuous tumbling will ensue. If the angular rate is at the critical value the spacecraft drifts towards the horizontal attitude from which a spontaneous periodic tumbling occurs

  10. xLuna - D emonstrator on ESA Mars Rover

    Braga, P.; Henriques, L.; Carvalho, B.; Chevalley, P.; Zulianello, M.


    There is a significant gap between the services offered by existing space qualified Real-Time Operating Systems (RTOS) and those required by the most demanding future space applications. New requirements for autonomy, terrain mapping and navigation, Simultaneous Location and Mapping (SLAM), improvement of the throughput of science tasks, all demand high level services such as file systems or POSIX compliant interfaces. xLuna is an operating system that aims fulfilling these new requirements. Besides providing the typical services that of an RTOS (tasks and interrupts management, timers, message queues, etc), it also includes most of the features available in modern general-purpose operating systems, such as Linux. This paper describes a case study that proposes to demonstrate the usage of xLuna on board a rover currently in use for the development of algorithms in preparation of a mission to Mars.

  11. Mars Rover Sample Return aerocapture configuration design and packaging constraints

    Lawson, Shelby J.


    This paper discusses the aerodynamics requirements, volume and mass constraints that lead to a biconic aeroshell vehicle design that protects the Mars Rover Sample Return (MRSR) mission elements from launch to Mars landing. The aerodynamic requirements for Mars aerocapture and entry and packaging constraints for the MRSR elements result in a symmetric biconic aeroshell that develops a L/D of 1.0 at 27.0 deg angle of attack. A significant problem in the study is obtaining a cg that provides adequate aerodynamic stability and performance within the mission imposed constraints. Packaging methods that relieve the cg problems include forward placement of aeroshell propellant tanks and incorporating aeroshell structure as lander structure. The MRSR missions developed during the pre-phase A study are discussed with dimensional and mass data included. Further study is needed for some missions to minimize MRSR element volume so that launch mass constraints can be met.

  12. Rover's Wheel Churns Up Bright Martian Soil (False Color)


    NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Spirit acquired this mosaic on the mission's 1,202nd Martian day, or sol (May 21, 2007), while investigating the area east of the elevated plateau known as 'Home Plate' in the 'Columbia Hills.' The mosaic shows an area of disturbed soil, nicknamed 'Gertrude Weise' by scientists, made by Spirit's stuck right front wheel. The trench exposed a patch of nearly pure silica, with the composition of opal. It could have come from either a hot-spring environment or an environment called a fumarole, in which acidic, volcanic steam rises through cracks. Either way, its formation involved water, and on Earth, both of these types of settings teem with microbial life. The image is presented here in false color that is used to bring out subtle differences in color.

  13. Rover's Wheel Churns Up Bright Martian Soil (Stereo)


    NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Spirit acquired this mosaic on the mission's 1,202nd Martian day, or sol (May 21, 2007), while investigating the area east of the elevated plateau known as 'Home Plate' in the 'Columbia Hills.' The mosaic shows an area of disturbed soil, nicknamed 'Gertrude Weise' by scientists, made by Spirit's stuck right front wheel. The trench exposed a patch of nearly pure silica, with the composition of opal. It could have come from either a hot-spring environment or an environment called a fumarole, in which acidic, volcanic steam rises through cracks. Either way, its formation involved water, and on Earth, both of these types of settings teem with microbial life. Multiple images taken with Spirit's panoramic camera are combined here into a stereo view that appears three-dimensional when seen through red-blue glasses, with the red lens on the left.

  14. Rover's Wheel Churns Up Bright Martian Soil (Vertical)


    NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Spirit acquired this mosaic on the mission's 1,202nd Martian day, or sol (May 21, 2007), while investigating the area east of the elevated plateau known as 'Home Plate' in the 'Columbia Hills.' The mosaic shows an area of disturbed soil, nicknamed 'Gertrude Weise' by scientists, made by Spirit's stuck right front wheel. The trench exposed a patch of nearly pure silica, with the composition of opal. It could have come from either a hot-spring environment or an environment called a fumarole, in which acidic, volcanic steam rises through cracks. Either way, its formation involved water, and on Earth, both of these types of settings teem with microbial life. The image is presented here as a vertical projection, as if looking straight down, and in false color, which brings out subtle color differences.

  15. The evolution of automation and robotics in manned spaceflight

    Moser, T. L.; Erickson, J. D.


    The evolution of automation on all manned spacecraft including the Space Shuttle is reviewed, and a concept for increasing automation and robotics from the current Shuttle Remote Manipulator System (RMS) to an autonomous system is presented. The requirements for robotic elements are identified for various functions on the Space Station, including extravehicular functions and functions within laboratory and habitation modules which expand man's capacity in space and allow selected teleoperation from the ground. The initial Space Station will employ a telerobot and necessary knowledge based systems as an advisory to the crew on monitoring, fault diagnosis, and short term planning and scheduling.

  16. In-Situ Operations and Planning for the Mars Science Laboratory Robotic Arm: The First 200 Sols

    Robinson, M.; Collins, C.; Leger, P.; Carsten, J.; Tompkins, V.; Hartman, F.; Yen, J.


    The Robotic Arm (RA) has operated for more than 200 Martian solar days (or sols) since the Mars Science Laboratory rover touched down in Gale Crater on August 5, 2012. During the first seven months on Mars the robotic arm has performed multiple contact science sols including the positioning of the Alpha Particle X-Ray Spectrometer (APXS) and/or Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI) with respect to rocks or loose regolith targets. The RA has supported sample acquisition using both the scoop and drill, sample processing with CHIMRA (Collection and Handling for In- Situ Martian Rock Analysis), and delivery of sample portions to the observation tray, and the SAM (Sample Analysis at Mars) and CHEMIN (Chemistry and Mineralogy) science instruments. This paper describes the planning and execution of robotic arm activities during surface operations, and reviews robotic arm performance results from Mars to date.

  17. Worldwide Spacecraft Crew Hatch History

    Johnson, Gary


    The JSC Flight Safety Office has developed this compilation of historical information on spacecraft crew hatches to assist the Safety Tech Authority in the evaluation and analysis of worldwide spacecraft crew hatch design and performance. The document is prepared by SAIC s Gary Johnson, former NASA JSC S&MA Associate Director for Technical. Mr. Johnson s previous experience brings expert knowledge to assess the relevancy of data presented. He has experience with six (6) of the NASA spacecraft programs that are covered in this document: Apollo; Skylab; Apollo Soyuz Test Project (ASTP), Space Shuttle, ISS and the Shuttle/Mir Program. Mr. Johnson is also intimately familiar with the JSC Design and Procedures Standard, JPR 8080.5, having been one of its original developers. The observations and findings are presented first by country and organized within each country section by program in chronological order of emergence. A host of reference sources used to augment the personal observations and comments of the author are named within the text and/or listed in the reference section of this document. Careful attention to the selection and inclusion of photos, drawings and diagrams is used to give visual association and clarity to the topic areas examined.

  18. Autonomous Vision-Based Tethered-Assisted Rover Docking

    Tsai, Dorian; Nesnas, Issa A.D.; Zarzhitsky, Dimitri


    Many intriguing science discoveries on planetary surfaces, such as the seasonal flows on crater walls and skylight entrances to lava tubes, are at sites that are currently inaccessible to state-of-the-art rovers. The in situ exploration of such sites is likely to require a tethered platform both for mechanical support and for providing power and communication. Mother/daughter architectures have been investigated where a mother deploys a tethered daughter into extreme terrains. Deploying and retracting a tethered daughter requires undocking and re-docking of the daughter to the mother, with the latter being the challenging part. In this paper, we describe a vision-based tether-assisted algorithm for the autonomous re-docking of a daughter to its mother following an extreme terrain excursion. The algorithm uses fiducials mounted on the mother to improve the reliability and accuracy of estimating the pose of the mother relative to the daughter. The tether that is anchored by the mother helps the docking process and increases the system's tolerance to pose uncertainties by mechanically aligning the mating parts in the final docking phase. A preliminary version of the algorithm was developed and field-tested on the Axel rover in the JPL Mars Yard. The algorithm achieved an 80% success rate in 40 experiments in both firm and loose soils and starting from up to 6 m away at up to 40 deg radial angle and 20 deg relative heading. The algorithm does not rely on an initial estimate of the relative pose. The preliminary results are promising and help retire the risk associated with the autonomous docking process enabling consideration in future martian and lunar missions.

  19. Integrating standard operating procedures with spacecraft automation, Phase I

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Spacecraft automation has the potential to assist crew members and spacecraft operators in managing spacecraft systems during extended space missions. Automation can...

  20. [Robotics in pediatric surgery].

    Camps, J I


    Despite the extensive use of robotics in the adult population, the use of robotics in pediatrics has not been well accepted. There is still a lack of awareness from pediatric surgeons on how to use the robotic equipment, its advantages and indications. Benefit is still controversial. Dexterity and better visualization of the surgical field are one of the strong values. Conversely, cost and a lack of small instruments prevent the use of robotics in the smaller patients. The aim of this manuscript is to present the controversies about the use of robotics in pediatric surgery.

  1. Low cost submarine robot

    Ponlachart Chotikarn


    Full Text Available A submarine robot is a semi-autonomous submarine robot used mainly for marine environmental research. We aim todevelop a low cost, semi-autonomous submarine robot which is able to travel underwater. The robot’s structure was designedand patented using a novel idea of the diving system employing a volume adjustment mechanism to vary the robot’s density.A light weight, flexibility and small structure provided by PVC can be used to construct the torpedo-liked shape robot.Hydraulic seal and O-ring rubbers are used to prevent water leaking. This robot is controlled by a wired communicationsystem.

  2. Advances in robot kinematics

    Khatib, Oussama


    The topics addressed in this book cover the whole range of kinematic analysis, synthesis and design and consider robotic systems possessing serial, parallel and cable driven mechanisms. The robotic systems range from being less than fully mobile to kinematically redundant to overconstrained.  The fifty-six contributions report the latest results in robot kinematics with emphasis on emerging areas such as design and control of humanoids or humanoid subsystems. The book is of interest to researchers wanting to bring their knowledge up to date regarding modern topics in one of the basic disciplines in robotics, which relates to the essential property of robots, the motion of mechanisms.

  3. Lunar polar rover science operations: Lessons learned and mission architecture implications derived from the Mojave Volatiles Prospector (MVP) terrestrial field campaign

    Heldmann, Jennifer L.; Colaprete, Anthony; Elphic, Richard C.; Lim, Darlene; Deans, Matthew; Cook, Amanda; Roush, Ted; Skok, J. R.; Button, Nicole E.; Karunatillake, S.; Stoker, Carol; Marquez, Jessica J.; Shirley, Mark; Kobayashi, Linda; Lees, David; Bresina, John; Hunt, Rusty


    The Mojave Volatiles Prospector (MVP) project is a science-driven field program with the goal of producing critical knowledge for conducting robotic exploration of the Moon. Specifically, MVP focuses on studying a lunar mission analog to characterize the form and distribution of lunar volatiles. Although lunar volatiles are known to be present near the poles of the Moon, the three dimensional distribution and physical characteristics of lunar polar volatiles are largely unknown. A landed mission with the ability to traverse the lunar surface is thus required to characterize the spatial distribution of lunar polar volatiles. NASA's Resource Prospector (RP) mission is a lunar polar rover mission that will operate primarily in sunlit regions near a lunar pole with near-real time operations to characterize the vertical and horizontal distribution of volatiles. The MVP project was conducted as a field campaign relevant to the RP lunar mission to provide science, payload, and operational lessons learned to the development of a real-time, short-duration lunar polar volatiles prospecting mission. To achieve these goals, the MVP project conducted a simulated lunar rover mission to investigate the composition and distribution of surface and subsurface volatiles in a natural environment with an unknown volatile distribution within the Mojave Desert, improving our understanding of how to find, characterize, and access volatiles on the Moon.

  4. Dynamic Modeling and Soil Mechanics for Path Planning of the Mars Exploration Rovers

    Trease, Brian; Arvidson, Raymond; Lindemann, Randel; Bennett, Keith; Zhou, Feng; Iagnemma, Karl; Senatore, Carmine; Van Dyke, Lauren


    To help minimize risk of high sinkage and slippage during drives and to better understand soil properties and rover terramechanics from drive data, a multidisciplinary team was formed under the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) project to develop and utilize dynamic computer-based models for rover drives over realistic terrains. The resulting tool, named ARTEMIS (Adams-based Rover Terramechanics and Mobility Interaction Simulator), consists of the dynamic model, a library of terramechanics subroutines, and the high-resolution digital elevation maps of the Mars surface. A 200-element model of the rovers was developed and validated for drop tests before launch, using MSC-Adams dynamic modeling software. Newly modeled terrain-rover interactions include the rut-formation effect of deformable soils, using the classical Bekker-Wong implementation of compaction resistances and bull-dozing effects. The paper presents the details and implementation of the model with two case studies based on actual MER telemetry data. In its final form, ARTEMIS will be used in a predictive manner to assess terrain navigability and will become part of the overall effort in path planning and navigation for both Martian and lunar rovers.

  5. Control of Multiple Robotic Sentry Vehicles

    Feddema, J.; Klarer, P.; Lewis, C.


    As part of a project for the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, Sandia National Laboratories is developing and testing the feasibility of using of a cooperative team of robotic sentry vehicles to guard a perimeter and to perform surround and diversion tasks. This paper describes on-going activities in the development of these robotic sentry vehicles. To date, we have developed a robotic perimeter detection system which consists of eight ''Roving All Terrain Lunar Explorer Rover'' (RATLER{trademark}) vehicles, a laptop-based base-station, and several Miniature Intrusion Detection Sensors (MIDS). A radio frequency receiver on each of the RATLER vehicles alerts the sentry vehicles of alarms from the hidden MIDS. When an alarm is received, each vehicle decides whether it should investigate the alarm based on the proximity of itself and the other vehicles to the alarm. As one vehicle attends an alarm, the other vehicles adjust their position around the perimeter to better prepare for another alarm. We have also demonstrated the ability to drive multiple vehicles in formation via tele-operation or by waypoint GPS navigation. This is currently being extended to include mission planning capabilities. At the base-station, the operator can draw on an aerial map the goal regions to be surrounded and the repulsive regions to be avoided. A potential field path planner automatically generates a path from the vehicles' current position to the goal regions while avoiding the repulsive regions and the other vehicles. This path is previewed to the operator before the regions are downloaded to the vehicles. The same potential field path planner resides on the vehicle, except additional repulsive forces from on-board proximity sensors guide the vehicle away from unplanned obstacles.

  6. Robots and lattice automata

    Adamatzky, Andrew


    The book gives a comprehensive overview of the state-of-the-art research and engineering in theory and application of Lattice Automata in design and control of autonomous Robots. Automata and robots share the same notional meaning. Automata (originated from the latinization of the Greek word “αυτόματον”) as self-operating autonomous machines invented from ancient years can be easily considered the first steps of robotic-like efforts. Automata are mathematical models of Robots and also they are integral parts of robotic control systems. A Lattice Automaton is a regular array or a collective of finite state machines, or automata. The Automata update their states by the same rules depending on states of their immediate neighbours. In the context of this book, Lattice Automata are used in developing modular reconfigurable robotic systems, path planning and map exploration for robots, as robot controllers, synchronisation of robot collectives, robot vision, parallel robotic actuators. All chapters are...

  7. Marine Robot Autonomy


    Autonomy for Marine Robots provides a timely and insightful overview of intelligent autonomy in marine robots. A brief history of this emerging field is provided, along with a discussion of the challenges unique to the underwater environment and their impact on the level of intelligent autonomy required.  Topics covered at length examine advanced frameworks, path-planning, fault tolerance, machine learning, and cooperation as relevant to marine robots that need intelligent autonomy.  This book also: Discusses and offers solutions for the unique challenges presented by more complex missions and the dynamic underwater environment when operating autonomous marine robots Includes case studies that demonstrate intelligent autonomy in marine robots to perform underwater simultaneous localization and mapping  Autonomy for Marine Robots is an ideal book for researchers and engineers interested in the field of marine robots.      

  8. Determining best practices in reconnoitering sites for habitability potential on Mars using a semi-autonomous rover: A GeoHeuristic Operational Strategies Test.

    Yingst, R A; Berger, J; Cohen, B A; Hynek, B; Schmidt, M E


    We tested science operations strategies developed for use in remote mobile spacecraft missions, to determine whether reconnoitering a site of potential habitability prior to in-depth study (a walkabout-first strategy) can be a more efficient use of time and resources than the linear approach commonly used by planetary rover missions. Two field teams studied a sedimentary sequence in Utah to assess habitability potential. At each site one team commanded a human "rover" to execute observations and conducted data analysis and made follow-on decisions based solely on those observations. Another team followed the same traverse using traditional terrestrial field methods, and the results of the two teams were compared. Test results indicate that for a mission with goals similar to our field case, the walkabout-first strategy may save time and other mission resources, while improving science return. The approach enabled more informed choices and higher team confidence in choosing where to spend time and other consumable resources. The walkabout strategy may prove most efficient when many close sites must be triaged to a smaller subset for detailed study or sampling. This situation would arise when mission goals include finding, identifying, characterizing or sampling a specific material, feature or type of environment within a certain area.

  9. Assessment of Proficiency During Simulated Rover Operations Following Long-Duration Spaceflight

    Wood, S. J.; Dean, S. L.; De Dios, Y. E.; MacDougall, H. G.; Moore, S. T.


    Following long-duration space travel, pressurized rovers will enhance crew mobility to explore Mars and other planetary surfaces. Adaptive changes in sensorimotor function may limit the crew s proficiency when performing some rover operations shortly after transition to the new gravitoinertial environment. The primary goal of this investigation is to quantify postflight decrements in operational proficiency in a motion-based rover simulation after International Space Station (ISS) expeditions. Given that postflight performance will also be influenced by the level of preflight proficiency attained, a ground-based normative study was conducted to characterize the acquisition of skills over multiple sessions.

  10. Spacecraft Jitter Attenuation Using Embedded Piezoelectric Actuators

    Belvin, W. Keith


    Remote sensing from spacecraft requires precise pointing of measurement devices in order to achieve adequate spatial resolution. Unfortunately, various spacecraft disturbances induce vibrational jitter in the remote sensing instruments. The NASA Langley Research Center has performed analysis, simulations, and ground tests to identify the more promising technologies for minimizing spacecraft pointing jitter. These studies have shown that the use of smart materials to reduce spacecraft jitter is an excellent match between a maturing technology and an operational need. This paper describes the use of embedding piezoelectric actuators for vibration control and payload isolation. In addition, recent advances in modeling, simulation, and testing of spacecraft pointing jitter are discussed.

  11. Development and experimentation of LQR/APF guidance and control for autonomous proximity maneuvers of multiple spacecraft

    Bevilacqua, R.; Lehmann, T.; Romano, M.


    This work introduces a novel control algorithm for close proximity multiple spacecraft autonomous maneuvers, based on hybrid linear quadratic regulator/artificial potential function (LQR/APF), for applications including autonomous docking, on-orbit assembly and spacecraft servicing. Both theoretical developments and experimental validation of the proposed approach are presented. Fuel consumption is sub-optimized in real-time through re-computation of the LQR at each sample time, while performing collision avoidance through the APF and a high level decisional logic. The underlying LQR/APF controller is integrated with a customized wall-following technique and a decisional logic, overcoming problems such as local minima. The algorithm is experimentally tested on a four spacecraft simulators test bed at the Spacecraft Robotics Laboratory of the Naval Postgraduate School. The metrics to evaluate the control algorithm are: autonomy of the system in making decisions, successful completion of the maneuver, required time, and propellant consumption.

  12. Non-manufacturing applications of robotics

    Dauchez, P.


    This book presents the different non-manufacturing sectors of activity where robotics can have useful or necessary applications: underwater robotics, agriculture robotics, road work robotics, nuclear robotics, medical-surgery robotics, aids to disabled people, entertainment robotics. Service robotics has been voluntarily excluded because this developing sector is not mature yet. (J.S.)

  13. Evolution of robotic arms.

    Moran, Michael E


    The foundation of surgical robotics is in the development of the robotic arm. This is a thorough review of the literature on the nature and development of this device with emphasis on surgical applications. We have reviewed the published literature and classified robotic arms by their application: show, industrial application, medical application, etc. There is a definite trend in the manufacture of robotic arms toward more dextrous devices, more degrees-of-freedom, and capabilities beyond the human arm. da Vinci designed the first sophisticated robotic arm in 1495 with four degrees-of-freedom and an analog on-board controller supplying power and programmability. von Kemplen's chess-playing automaton left arm was quite sophisticated. Unimate introduced the first industrial robotic arm in 1961, it has subsequently evolved into the PUMA arm. In 1963 the Rancho arm was designed; Minsky's Tentacle arm appeared in 1968, Scheinman's Stanford arm in 1969, and MIT's Silver arm in 1974. Aird became the first cyborg human with a robotic arm in 1993. In 2000 Miguel Nicolalis redefined possible man-machine capacity in his work on cerebral implantation in owl-monkeys directly interfacing with robotic arms both locally and at a distance. The robotic arm is the end-effector of robotic systems and currently is the hallmark feature of the da Vinci Surgical System making its entrance into surgical application. But, despite the potential advantages of this computer-controlled master-slave system, robotic arms have definite limitations. Ongoing work in robotics has many potential solutions to the drawbacks of current robotic surgical systems.

  14. Spacecraft Design Thermal Control Subsystem

    Miyake, Robert N.


    The Thermal Control Subsystem engineers task is to maintain the temperature of all spacecraft components, subsystems, and the total flight system within specified limits for all flight modes from launch to end-of-mission. In some cases, specific stability and gradient temperature limits will be imposed on flight system elements. The Thermal Control Subsystem of "normal" flight systems, the mass, power, control, and sensing systems mass and power requirements are below 10% of the total flight system resources. In general the thermal control subsystem engineer is involved in all other flight subsystem designs.

  15. Ambler: Performance of a six-legged planetary rover

    Krotkov, E. P.; Simmons, R. G.; Whittaker, W. L.


    In this paper we quantify several performance metrics for the Ambler, a six-legged robot configured for autonomous traversal of Mars-like terrain. We present power consumption measures for walking on sandy terrain and for vertical lifts at different velocities. We document the performance of a novel dead-reckoning approach, and analyze its accuracy. We describe the results of autonomous walking experiments in terms of terrain traversed, walking speed and endurance.

  16. Ambler - Performance of a six-legged planetary rover

    Krotkov, E. P.; Simmons, R. G.; Whittaker, W. L.


    In this paper, several performance metrics are quantified for the Ambler, a six-legged robot configured for autonomous traversal of Mars-like terrain. Power consumption measures are presented for walking on sandy terrain and for vertical lifts at different velocities. The performance of a novel dead reckoning approach is documented, and its accuracy is analyzed. The results of autonomous walking experiments are described in terms of terrain traversed, walking speed, and endurance.

  17. Is Ethics of Robotics about Robots? Philosophy of Robotics Beyond Realism and Individualilsm.

    Coeckelbergh, Mark


    If we are doing ethics of robotics, what exactly is the object of our inquiry? This paper challenges 'individualist' robot ontology and 'individualist' social philosophy of robots. It is argued that ethics of robotics should not study and evaluate robotics exclusively in terms of individual

  18. A robotic exploration mission to Mars and Phobos

    Kerr, Justin H.; Defosse, Erin; Ho, Quang; Barriga, Ernisto; Davis, Grant; Mccourt, Steve; Smith, Matt


    This report discusses the design of a robotic exploration to Mars and Phobos. It begins with the mission's background and objectives, followed by a detailed explanation of various elements of Project Aeneas, including science, spacecraft, probes, and orbital trajectories. In addition, a description of Argos Space Endeavours, management procedures, and overall project costs are presented. Finally, a list of recommendations for future design activity is included.

  19. Capturing Requirements for Autonomous Spacecraft with Autonomy Requirements Engineering

    Vassev, Emil; Hinchey, Mike


    The Autonomy Requirements Engineering (ARE) approach has been developed by Lero - the Irish Software Engineering Research Center within the mandate of a joint project with ESA, the European Space Agency. The approach is intended to help engineers develop missions for unmanned exploration, often with limited or no human control. Such robotics space missions rely on the most recent advances in automation and robotic technologies where autonomy and autonomic computing principles drive the design and implementation of unmanned spacecraft [1]. To tackle the integration and promotion of autonomy in software-intensive systems, ARE combines generic autonomy requirements (GAR) with goal-oriented requirements engineering (GORE). Using this approach, software engineers can determine what autonomic features to develop for a particular system (e.g., a space mission) as well as what artifacts that process might generate (e.g., goals models, requirements specification, etc.). The inputs required by this approach are the mission goals and the domain-specific GAR reflecting specifics of the mission class (e.g., interplanetary missions).

  20. Humanlike Robots - The Upcoming Revolution in Robotics

    Bar-Cohen, Yoseph


    Humans have always sought to imitate the human appearance, functions and intelligence. Human-like robots, which for many years have been a science fiction, are increasingly becoming an engineering reality resulting from the many advances in biologically inspired technologies. These biomimetic technologies include artificial intelligence, artificial vision and hearing as well as artificial muscles, also known as electroactive polymers (EAP). Robots, such as the vacuum cleaner Rumba and the robotic lawnmower, that don't have human shape, are already finding growing use in homes worldwide. As opposed to other human-made machines and devices, this technology raises also various questions and concerns and they need to be addressed as the technology advances. These include the need to prevent accidents, deliberate harm, or their use in crime. In this paper the state-of-the-art of the ultimate goal of biomimetics, the development of humanlike robots, the potentials and the challenges are reviewed.

  1. Humanlike robots: the upcoming revolution in robotics

    Bar-Cohen, Yoseph


    Humans have always sought to imitate the human appearance, functions and intelligence. Human-like robots, which for many years have been a science fiction, are increasingly becoming an engineering reality resulting from the many advances in biologically inspired technologies. These biomimetic technologies include artificial intelligence, artificial vision and hearing as well as artificial muscles, also known as electroactive polymers (EAP). Robots, such as the vacuum cleaner Rumba and the robotic lawnmower, that don't have human shape, are already finding growing use in homes worldwide. As opposed to other human-made machines and devices, this technology raises also various questions and concerns and they need to be addressed as the technology advances. These include the need to prevent accidents, deliberate harm, or their use in crime. In this paper the state-of-the-art of the ultimate goal of biomimetics, the development of humanlike robots, the potentials and the challenges are reviewed.

  2. A Virtual Simulation Environment for Lunar Rover: Framework and Key Technologies

    Yan-chun Yang


    Full Text Available Lunar rover development involves a large amount of validation works in realistic operational conditions, including its mechanical subsystem and on-board software. Real tests require equipped rover platform and a realistic terrain. It is very time consuming and high cost. To improve the development efficiency, a rover simulation environment called RSVE that affords real time capabilities with high fidelity has been developed. It uses fractional Brown motion (fBm technique and statistical properties to generate lunar surface. Thus, various terrain models for simulation can be generated through changing several parameters. To simulate lunar rover evolving on natural and unstructured surface with high realism, the whole dynamics of the multi-body systems and complex interactions with soft ground is integrated in this environment. An example for path planning algorithm and controlling algorithm testing in this environment is tested. This simulation environment runs on PC or Silicon Graphics.

  3. A Virtual Simulation Environment for Lunar Rover: Framework and Key Technologies

    Yan-chun Yang


    Full Text Available Lunar rover development involves a large amount of validation works in realistic operational conditions, including its mechanical subsystem and on-board software. Real tests require equipped rover platform and a realistic terrain. It is very time consuming and high cost. To improve the development efficiency, a rover simulation environment called RSVE that affords real time capabilities with high fidelity has been developed. It uses fractional Brown motion (fBm technique and statistical properties to generate lunar surface. Thus, various terrain models for simulation can be generated through changing several parameters. To simulate lunar rover evolving on natural and unstructured surface with high realism, the whole dynamics of the multi-body systems and complex interactions with soft ground is integrated in this environment. An example for path planning algorithm and controlling algorithm testing in this environment is tested. This simulation environment runs on PC or Silicon Graphics.

  4. TU Berlin Rover Family for Terrestrial Testing of Complex Planetary Mission Scenarios

    Kryza, L.; Brieß, K.


    The TU Berlin has developed a family of planetary rovers for educational use and research activities. The paper will introduce these cost-effective systems, which can be used for analogue mission demonstration on Earth.

  5. An Overview of a Regenerative Fuel Cell Concept for a Mars Surface Mobile Element (Mars Rover)

    Andersson, T.


    This paper outlines an overview of a regenerative fuel cell concept for a Mars rover. The objectives of the system are to provide electrical and thermal power during the Mars night and to provide electrical power for the operational cycles.

  6. Robotic devices for nuclear plant

    Abel, E


    The article surveys the background of nuclear remote handling and its associated technology, robotics. Manipulators, robots, robot applications, extending the range of applications, and future developments, are all discussed.

  7. Evolutionary robotics – A review

    R. Narasimhan (Krishtel eMaging) 1461 1996 Oct 15 13:05:22

    a need for a technique by which the robot is able to acquire new behaviours automatically .... Evolutionary robotics is a comparatively new field of robotics research, which seems to ..... Technical Report: PCIA-94-04, Institute of Psychology,.

  8. Assessment of Mars Exploration Rover Landing Site Predictions

    Golombek, M. P.


    Comprehensive analyses of remote sensing data during the 3-year effort to select the Mars Exploration Rover landing sites at Gusev crater and Meridiani Planum correctly predicted the safe and trafficable surfaces explored by the two rovers. Gusev crater was predicted to be a relatively low relief surface that was comparably dusty, but less rocky than the Viking landing sites. Available data for Meridiani Planum indicated a very flat plain composed of basaltic sand to granules and hematite that would look completely unlike any of the existing landing sites with a dark, low albedo surface, little dust and very few rocks. Orbital thermal inertia measurements of 315 J m-2 s-0.5 K-1 at Gusev suggested surfaces dominated by duricrust to cemented soil-like materials or cohesionless sand or granules, which is consistent with observed soil characteristics and measured thermal inertias from the surface. THEMIS thermal inertias along the traverse at Gusev vary from 285 at the landing site to 330 around Bonneville rim and show systematic variations that can be related to the observed increase in rock abundance (5-30%). Meridiani has an orbital bulk inertia of ~200, similar to measured surface inertias that correspond to observed surfaces dominated by 0.2 mm sand size particles. Rock abundance derived from orbital thermal differencing techniques suggested that Meridiani Planum would have very low rock abundance, consistent with the rock free plain traversed by Opportunity. Spirit landed in an 8% orbital rock abundance pixel, consistent with the measured 7% of the surface covered by rocks >0.04 m diameter at the landing site, which is representative of the plains away from craters. The orbital albedo of the Spirit traverse varies from 0.19 to 0.30, consistent with surface measurements in and out of dust devil tracks. Opportunity is the first landing in a low albedo portion of Mars as seen from orbit, which is consistent with the dark, dust-free surface and measured albedos. The

  9. Benefits of Spacecraft Level Vibration Testing

    Gordon, Scott; Kern, Dennis L.


    NASA-HDBK-7008 Spacecraft Level Dynamic Environments Testing discusses the approaches, benefits, dangers, and recommended practices for spacecraft level dynamic environments testing, including vibration testing. This paper discusses in additional detail the benefits and actual experiences of vibration testing spacecraft for NASA Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) and Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) flight projects. JPL and GSFC have both similarities and differences in their spacecraft level vibration test approach: JPL uses a random vibration input and a frequency range usually starting at 5 Hz and extending to as high as 250 Hz. GSFC uses a sine sweep vibration input and a frequency range usually starting at 5 Hz and extending only to the limits of the coupled loads analysis (typically 50 to 60 Hz). However, both JPL and GSFC use force limiting to realistically notch spacecraft resonances and response (acceleration) limiting as necessary to protect spacecraft structure and hardware from exceeding design strength capabilities. Despite GSFC and JPL differences in spacecraft level vibration test approaches, both have uncovered a significant number of spacecraft design and workmanship anomalies in vibration tests. This paper will give an overview of JPL and GSFC spacecraft vibration testing approaches and provide a detailed description of spacecraft anomalies revealed.

  10. Fast Optical Hazard Detection for Planetary Rovers Using Multiple Spot Laser Triangulation

    Matthies, L.; Balch, T.; Wilcox, B.


    A new laser-based optical sensor system that provides hazard detection for planetary rovers is presented. It is anticipated that the sensor can support safe travel at speeds up to 6cm/second for large (1m) rovers in full sunlight on Earth or Mars. The system overcomes limitations in an older design that require image differencing ot detect a laser stripe in full sun.

  11. Pancam and microscopic imager observations of dust on the Spirit Rovers

    Vaughan....[], Alicia F.; Johnson, Jeffrey R.; Walter, Goetz


    This work describes dust deposits on the Spirit Rover over 2000 sols through examination of Pancam and Microscopic Imager observations of specific locations on the rover body, including portions of the solar array, Pancam and Mini-TES calibration targets, and the magnets. This data set reveals...... the three "cleaning events" experienced by Spirit to date, the spectral properties of dust, and the tendency of dust particles to form aggregates 100 um and larger...

  12. INTERNATIONAL CORPORATE RELATIONS : Strategic Alliance and M&A : The Case of Honda, Rover and BMW

    勝二, 俊和; ショウジ, トシカズ; TOSHIKAZU, SHOJI


    The primary objective of the dissertation is to compare and contrast two strategies of international corporate relations; "strategic alliances" and "mergers and acquisitions". The focus would be on Honda, Rover and BMW which exhibited characteristics, strengths and weaknesses of both "strategic alliances" and "mergers and acquisitions" The thesis will also demonstrate how the BMW deal caused instability and thus made the alliance vulnerable. When companies like Honda, Rover and BMW adopt eith...

  13. Grasping in Robotics


    Grasping in Robotics contains original contributions in the field of grasping in robotics with a broad multidisciplinary approach. This gives the possibility of addressing all the major issues related to robotized grasping, including milestones in grasping through the centuries, mechanical design issues, control issues, modelling achievements and issues, formulations and software for simulation purposes, sensors and vision integration, applications in industrial field and non-conventional applications (including service robotics and agriculture).   The contributors to this book are experts in their own diverse and wide ranging fields. This multidisciplinary approach can help make Grasping in Robotics of interest to a very wide audience. In particular, it can be a useful reference book for researchers, students and users in the wide field of grasping in robotics from many different disciplines including mechanical design, hardware design, control design, user interfaces, modelling, simulation, sensors and hum...

  14. Robot Games for Elderly

    Hansen, Søren Tranberg


    improve a person’s overall health, and this thesis investigates how games based on an autonomous, mobile robot platform, can be used to motivate elderly to move physically while playing. The focus of the investigation is on the development of games for an autonomous, mobile robot based on algorithms using...... spatio-temporal information about player behaviour - more specifically, I investigate three types of games each using a different control strategy. The first game is based on basic robot control which allows the robot to detect and follow a person. A field study in a rehabilitation centre and a nursing....... The robot facilitates interaction, and the study suggests that robot based games potentially can be used for training balance and orientation. The second game consists in an adaptive game algorithm which gradually adjusts the game challenge to the mobility skills of the player based on spatio...

  15. Robot-laser system

    Akeel, H.A.


    A robot-laser system is described for providing a laser beam at a desired location, the system comprising: a laser beam source; a robot including a plurality of movable parts including a hollow robot arm having a central axis along which the laser source directs the laser beam; at least one mirror for reflecting the laser beam from the source to the desired location, the mirror being mounted within the robot arm to move therewith and relative thereto to about a transverse axis that extends angularly to the central axis of the robot arm; and an automatic programmable control system for automatically moving the mirror about the transverse axis relative to and in synchronization with movement of the robot arm to thereby direct the laser beam to the desired location as the arm is moved

  16. Survival of falling robots

    Cameron, Jonathan M.; Arkin, Ronald C.


    As mobile robots are used in more uncertain and dangerous environments, it will become important to design them so that they can survive falls. In this paper, we examine a number of mechanisms and strategies that animals use to withstand these potentially catastrophic events and extend them to the design of robots. A brief survey of several aspects of how common cats survive falls provides an understanding of the issues involved in preventing traumatic injury during a falling event. After outlining situations in which robots might fall, a number of factors affecting their survival are described. From this background, several robot design guidelines are derived. These include recommendations for the physical structure of the robot as well as requirements for the robot control architecture. A control architecture is proposed based on reactive control techniques and action-oriented perception that is geared to support this form of survival behavior.

  17. Robotic surgery update.

    Jacobsen, G; Elli, F; Horgan, S


    Minimally invasive surgical techniques have revolutionized the field of surgery. Telesurgical manipulators (robots) and new information technologies strive to improve upon currently available minimally invasive techniques and create new possibilities. A retrospective review of all robotic cases at a single academic medical center from August 2000 until November 2002 was conducted. A comprehensive literature evaluation on robotic surgical technology was also performed. Robotic technology is safely and effectively being applied at our institution. Robotic and information technologies have improved upon minimally invasive surgical techniques and created new opportunities not attainable in open surgery. Robotic technology offers many benefits over traditional minimal access techniques and has been proven safe and effective. Further research is needed to better define the optimal application of this technology. Credentialing and educational requirements also need to be delineated.

  18. Survival of falling robots

    Cameron, Jonathan M.; Arkin, Ronald C.


    As mobile robots are used in more uncertain and dangerous environments, it will become important to design them so that they can survive falls. In this paper, we examine a number of mechanisms and strategies that animals use to withstand these potentially catastrophic events and extend them to the design of robots. A brief survey of several aspects of how common cats survive falls provides an understanding of the issues involved in preventing traumatic injury during a falling event. After outlining situations in which robots might fall, a number of factors affecting their survival are described. From this background, several robot design guidelines are derived. These include recommendations for the physical structure of the robot as well as requirements for the robot control architecture. A control architecture is proposed based on reactive control techniques and action-oriented perception that is geared to support this form of survival behavior.

  19. Hybrid spacecraft attitude control system

    Renuganth Varatharajoo


    Full Text Available The hybrid subsystem design could be an attractive approach for futurespacecraft to cope with their demands. The idea of combining theconventional Attitude Control System and the Electrical Power System ispresented in this article. The Combined Energy and Attitude ControlSystem (CEACS consisting of a double counter rotating flywheel assemblyis investigated for small satellites in this article. Another hybrid systemincorporating the conventional Attitude Control System into the ThermalControl System forming the Combined Attitude and Thermal ControlSystem (CATCS consisting of a "fluid wheel" and permanent magnets isalso investigated for small satellites herein. The governing equationsdescribing both these novel hybrid subsystems are presented and theironboard architectures are numerically tested. Both the investigated novelhybrid spacecraft subsystems comply with the reference missionrequirements.The hybrid subsystem design could be an attractive approach for futurespacecraft to cope with their demands. The idea of combining theconventional Attitude Control System and the Electrical Power System ispresented in this article. The Combined Energy and Attitude ControlSystem (CEACS consisting of a double counter rotating flywheel assemblyis investigated for small satellites in this article. Another hybrid systemincorporating the conventional Attitude Control System into the ThermalControl System forming the Combined Attitude and Thermal ControlSystem (CATCS consisting of a "fluid wheel" and permanent magnets isalso investigated for small satellites herein. The governing equationsdescribing both these novel hybrid subsystems are presented and theironboard architectures are numerically tested. Both the investigated novelhybrid spacecraft subsystems comply with the reference missionrequirements.

  20. Fundamentals of soft robot locomotion

    Calisti, M.; Picardi, G.; Laschi, C.


    Soft robotics and its related technologies enable robot abilities in several robotics domains including, but not exclusively related to, manipulation, manufacturing, human���robot interaction and locomotion. Although field applications have emerged for soft manipulation and human���robot interaction, mobile soft robots appear to remain in the research stage, involving the somehow conflictual goals of having a deformable body and exerting forces on the environment to achieve locomotion. This p...

  1. Robotic liver surgery

    Leung, Universe


    Robotic surgery is an evolving technology that has been successfully applied to a number of surgical specialties, but its use in liver surgery has so far been limited. In this review article we discuss the challenges of minimally invasive liver surgery, the pros and cons of robotics, the evolution of medical robots, and the potentials in applying this technology to liver surgery. The current data in the literature are also presented. PMID:25392840

  2. Robotized transcranial magnetic stimulation

    Richter, Lars


    Presents new, cutting-edge algorithms for robot/camera calibration, sensor fusion and sensor calibration Explores the main challenges for accurate coil positioning, such as head motion, and outlines how active robotic motion compensation can outperform hand-held solutions Analyzes how a robotized system in medicine can alleviate concerns with a patient's safety, and presents a novel fault-tolerant algorithm (FTA) sensor for system safety

  3. Raspberry Pi robotics projects

    Grimmett, Richard


    This book is for enthusiasts who want to use the Raspberry Pi to build complex robotics projects. With the aid of the step-by-step instructions in this book, you can construct complex robotics projects that can move, talk, listen, see, swim, or fly. No previous Raspberry Pi robotics experience is assumed, but even experts will find unexpected and interesting information in this invaluable guide.

  4. Robots as Confederates

    Fischer, Kerstin


    This paper addresses the use of robots in experimental research for the study of human language, human interaction, and human nature. It is argued that robots make excellent confederates that can be completely controlled, yet which engage human participants in interactions that allow us to study...... numerous linguistic and psychological variables in isolation in an ecologically valid way. Robots thus combine the advantages of observational studies and of controlled experimentation....

  5. Robotics in General Surgery

    Wall, James; Chandra, Venita; Krummel, Thomas


    In summary, robotics has made a significant contribution to General Surgery in the past 20 years. In its infancy, surgical robotics has seen a shift from early systems that assisted the surgeon to current teleoperator systems that can enhance surgical skills. Telepresence and augmented reality surgery are being realized, while research and development into miniaturization and automation is rapidly moving forward. The future of surgical robotics is bright. Researchers are working to address th...

  6. Design of a nuclear-powered rover for lunar or Martian exploration

    Trellue, H.R.; Trautner, R.; Houts, M.G.; Poston, D.I.; Giovig, K.; Baca, J.A.; Lipinski, R.J.


    To perform more advanced studies on the surface of the moon or Mars, a rover must provide long-term power (≥10 kW e ). However, a majority of rovers in the past have been designed for much lower power levels (i.e., on the order of watts) or for shorter operating periods using stored power. Thus, more advanced systems are required to generate additional power. One possible design for a more highly powered rover involves using a nuclear reactor to supply energy to the rover and material from the surface of the moon or Mars to shield the electronics from high neutron fluxes and gamma doses. Typically, one of the main disadvantages of using a nuclear-powered rover is that the required shielding would be heavy and expensive to include as part of the payload on a mission. Obtaining most of the required shielding material from the surface of the moon or Mars would reduce the cost of the mission and still provide the necessary power. This paper describes the basic design of a rover that uses the Heatpipe Power System (HPS) as an energy source, including the shielding and reactor control issues associated with the design. It also discusses briefly the amount of power that can be produced by other power methods (solar/photovoltaic cells, radioisotope power supplies, dynamic radioisotope power systems, and the production of methane or acetylene fuel from the surface of Mars) as a comparison to the HPS

  7. Autonomous Rover Traverse and Precise Arm Placement on Remotely Designated Targets

    Felder, Michael; Nesnas, Issa A.; Pivtoraiko, Mihail; Kelly, Alonzo; Volpe, Richard


    Exploring planetary surfaces typically involves traversing challenging and unknown terrain and acquiring in-situ measurements at designated locations using arm-mounted instruments. We present field results for a new implementation of an autonomous capability that enables a rover to traverse and precisely place an arm-mounted instrument on remote targets. Using point-and-click mouse commands, a scientist designates targets in the initial imagery acquired from the rover's mast cameras. The rover then autonomously traverse the rocky terrain for a distance of 10 - 15 m, tracks the target(s) of interest during the traverse, positions itself for approaching the target, and then precisely places an arm-mounted instrument within 2-3 cm from the originally designated target. The rover proceeds to acquire science measurements with the instrument. This work advances what has been previously developed and integrated on the Mars Exploration Rovers by using algorithms that are capable of traversing more rock-dense terrains, enabling tight thread-the-needle maneuvers. We integrated these algorithms on the newly refurbished Athena Mars research rover and fielded them in the JPL Mars Yard. We conducted 43 runs with targets at distances ranging from 5 m to 15 m and achieved a success rate of 93% for placement of the instrument within 2-3 cm.

  8. Method and associated apparatus for capturing, servicing, and de-orbiting earth satellites using robotics

    Cepollina, Frank J. (Inventor); Burns, Richard D. (Inventor); Holz, Jill M. (Inventor); Corbo, James E. (Inventor); Jedhrich, Nicholas M. (Inventor)


    This invention is a method and supporting apparatus for autonomously capturing, servicing and de-orbiting a free-flying spacecraft, such as a satellite, using robotics. The capture of the spacecraft includes the steps of optically seeking and ranging the satellite using LIDAR; and matching tumble rates, rendezvousing and berthing with the satellite. Servicing of the spacecraft may be done using supervised autonomy, which is allowing a robot to execute a sequence of instructions without intervention from a remote human-occupied location. These instructions may be packaged at the remote station in a script and uplinked to the robot for execution upon remote command giving authority to proceed. Alternately, the instructions may be generated by Artificial Intelligence (AI) logic onboard the robot. In either case, the remote operator maintains the ability to abort an instruction or script at any time, as well as the ability to intervene using manual override to teleoperate the robot.In one embodiment, a vehicle used for carrying out the method of this invention comprises an ejection module, which includes the robot, and a de-orbit module. Once servicing is completed by the robot, the ejection module separates from the de-orbit module, leaving the de-orbit module attached to the satellite for de-orbiting the same at a future time. Upon separation, the ejection module can either de-orbit itself or rendezvous with another satellite for servicing. The ability to de-orbit a spacecraft further allows the opportunity to direct the landing of the spent satellite in a safe location away from population centers, such as the ocean.

  9. Robotic hand project

    Karaçizmeli, Cengiz; Çakır, Gökçe; Tükel, Dilek


    In this work, the mechatronic based robotic hand is controlled by the position data taken from the glove which has flex sensors mounted to capture finger bending of the human hand. The angular movement of human hand’s fingers are perceived and processed by a microcontroller, and the robotic hand is controlled by actuating servo motors. It has seen that robotic hand can simulate the movement of the human hand that put on the glove, during tests have done. This robotic hand can be used not only...

  10. Perspectives of construction robots

    Stepanov, M. A.; Gridchin, A. M.


    This article is an overview of construction robots features, based on formulating the list of requirements for different types of construction robots in relation to different types of construction works.. It describes a variety of construction works and ways to construct new or to adapt existing robot designs for a construction process. Also, it shows the prospects of AI-controlled machines, implementation of automated control systems and networks on construction sites. In the end, different ways to develop and improve, including ecological aspect, the construction process through the wide robotization, creating of data communication networks and, in perspective, establishing of fully AI-controlled construction complex are formulated.

  11. Robots de servicio

    Aracil, Rafael; Balaguer, Carlos; Armada, Manuel


    8 págs, 9 figs. El término Robots de Servicio apareció a finales de los años 80 como una necesidad de desarrollar máquinas y sistemas capaces de trabajar en entornos diferentes a los fabriles. Los Robots de Servicio tenían que poder trabajar en entornos noestructurados, en condiciones ambientales cambiantes y con una estrecha interacción con los humanos. En 1995 fue creado por la IEEE Robotics and Automation Society, el Technical Committee on Service Robots, y este comité definió en el año...

  12. Advanced robot locomotion.

    Neely, Jason C.; Sturgis, Beverly Rainwater; Byrne, Raymond Harry; Feddema, John Todd; Spletzer, Barry Louis; Rose, Scott E.; Novick, David Keith; Wilson, David Gerald; Buerger, Stephen P.


    This report contains the results of a research effort on advanced robot locomotion. The majority of this work focuses on walking robots. Walking robot applications include delivery of special payloads to unique locations that require human locomotion to exo-skeleton human assistance applications. A walking robot could step over obstacles and move through narrow openings that a wheeled or tracked vehicle could not overcome. It could pick up and manipulate objects in ways that a standard robot gripper could not. Most importantly, a walking robot would be able to rapidly perform these tasks through an intuitive user interface that mimics natural human motion. The largest obstacle arises in emulating stability and balance control naturally present in humans but needed for bipedal locomotion in a robot. A tracked robot is bulky and limited, but a wide wheel base assures passive stability. Human bipedal motion is so common that it is taken for granted, but bipedal motion requires active balance and stability control for which the analysis is non-trivial. This report contains an extensive literature study on the state-of-the-art of legged robotics, and it additionally provides the analysis, simulation, and hardware verification of two variants of a proto-type leg design.

  13. Robotic assisted laparoscopic colectomy.

    Pandalai, S


    Robotic surgery has evolved over the last decade to compensate for limitations in human dexterity. It avoids the need for a trained assistant while decreasing error rates such as perforations. The nature of the robotic assistance varies from voice activated camera control to more elaborate telerobotic systems such as the Zeus and the Da Vinci where the surgeon controls the robotic arms using a console. Herein, we report the first series of robotic assisted colectomies in Ireland using a voice activated camera control system.

  14. Autonomous military robotics

    Nath, Vishnu


    This SpringerBrief reveals the latest techniques in computer vision and machine learning on robots that are designed as accurate and efficient military snipers. Militaries around the world are investigating this technology to simplify the time, cost and safety measures necessary for training human snipers. These robots are developed by combining crucial aspects of computer science research areas including image processing, robotic kinematics and learning algorithms. The authors explain how a new humanoid robot, the iCub, uses high-speed cameras and computer vision algorithms to track the objec

  15. Soft-Material Robotics

    Wang, L; Nurzaman, SG; Iida, Fumiya


    There has been a boost of research activities in robotics using soft materials in the past ten years. It is expected that the use and control of soft materials can help realize robotic systems that are safer, cheaper, and more adaptable than the level that the conventional rigid-material robots can achieve. Contrary to a number of existing review and position papers on soft-material robotics, which mostly present case studies and/or discuss trends and challenges, the review focuses on the fun...

  16. Robotics for nuclear facilities

    Abe, Akira; Nakayama, Ryoichi; Kubo, Katsumi


    It is highly desirable that automatic or remotely controlled machines perform inspection and maintenance tasks in nuclear facilities. Toshiba has been working to develop multi-functional robots, with one typical example being a master-slave manipulator for use in reprocessing facilities. At the same time, the company is also working on the development of multi-purpose intelligent robots. One such device, an automatic inspection robot, to be deployed along a monorail, performs inspection by means of image processing technology, while and advanced intelligent maintenance robot is equipped with a special wheel-locomotion mechanism and manipulator and is designed to perform maintenance tasks. (author)

  17. Increasing Robotic Science Applications

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The principal objectives are to demonstrate robotic-based scientific investigations and resource prospecting, and develop and demonstrate modular science instrument...

  18. DSLs in robotics

    Schultz, Ulrik Pagh; Bordignon, Mirko; Stoy, Kasper


    Robotic systems blend hardware and software in a holistic way that intrinsically raises many crosscutting concerns such as concurrency, uncertainty, and time constraints. These concerns make programming robotic systems challenging as expertise from multiple domains needs to be integrated...... conceptually and technically. Programming languages play a central role in providing a higher level of abstraction. This briefing presents a case study on the evolution of domain-specific languages based on modular robotics. The case study on the evolution of domain-specific languages is based on a series...... of DSL prototypes developed over five years for the domain of modular, self-reconfigurable robots....

  19. Robonaut: a robot designed to work with humans in space

    Bluethmann, William; Ambrose, Robert; Diftler, Myron; Askew, Scott; Huber, Eric; Goza, Michael; Rehnmark, Fredrik; Lovchik, Chris; Magruder, Darby


    The Robotics Technology Branch at the NASA Johnson Space Center is developing robotic systems to assist astronauts in space. One such system, Robonaut, is a humanoid robot with the dexterity approaching that of a suited astronaut. Robonaut currently has two dexterous arms and hands, a three degree-of-freedom articulating waist, and a two degree-of-freedom neck used as a camera and sensor platform. In contrast to other space manipulator systems, Robonaut is designed to work within existing corridors and use the same tools as space walking astronauts. Robonaut is envisioned as working with astronauts, both autonomously and by teleoperation, performing a variety of tasks including, routine maintenance, setting up and breaking down worksites, assisting crew members while outside of spacecraft, and serving in a rapid response capacity.

  20. Space environments and their effects on space automation and robotics

    Garrett, Henry B.


    Automated and robotic systems will be exposed to a variety of environmental anomalies as a result of adverse interactions with the space environment. As an example, the coupling of electrical transients into control systems, due to EMI from plasma interactions and solar array arcing, may cause spurious commands that could be difficult to detect and correct in time to prevent damage during critical operations. Spacecraft glow and space debris could introduce false imaging information into optical sensor systems. The presentation provides a brief overview of the primary environments (plasma, neutral atmosphere, magnetic and electric fields, and solid particulates) that cause such adverse interactions. The descriptions, while brief, are intended to provide a basis for the other papers presented at this conference which detail the key interactions with automated and robotic systems. Given the growing complexity and sensitivity of automated and robotic space systems, an understanding of adverse space environments will be crucial to mitigating their effects.

  1. Mineralogical Results from the Mars Science Laboratory Rover Curiosity

    Blake, David Frederick.


    NASA's CheMin instrument, the first X-ray Diffractometer flown in space, has been operating on Mars for nearly five years. CheMin was first to establish the quantitative mineralogy of the Mars global soil (1). The instrument was next used to determine the mineralogy of a 3.7 billion year old lacustrine mudstone, a result that, together with findings from other instruments on the MSL Curiosity rover, documented the first habitable environment found on another planet (2). The mineralogy of this mudstone from an ancient playa lake was also used to derive the maximum concentration of CO2 in the early Mars atmosphere, a surprisingly low value that calls into question the current theory that CO2 greenhouse warming was responsible for the warm and wet environment of early Mars. CheMin later identified the mineral tridymite, indicative of silica-rich volcanism, in mudstones of the Murray formation on Mt. Sharp. This discovery challenges the paradigm of Mars as a basaltic planet and ushers in a new chapter of comparative terrestrial planetology (3). CheMin is now being used to systematically sample the sedimentary layers that comprise the lower strata of Mt. Sharp, a 5,000 meter sequence of sedimentary rock laid down in what was once a crater lake, characterizing isochemical sediments that through their changing mineralogy, document the oxidation and drying out of the Mars in early Hesperian time.

  2. Design and operation of the Rover vacuum system

    Wagner, E.P. Jr.; Griffith, D.L.; Rivera, J.M.


    The Rover process for recovering unused uranium from graphite fuels was operated during 1983 and 1984, and then shut down in 1984. The first steps of the process used fluidized alumina beds to burn away the graphite and produce a uranium bearing ash. The ash was then transferred to a different process cell for acid dissolution. At the time of shutdown, a significant, but unmeasureable, quantity of highly enriched uranium was left in the process vessels. Normal decontamination procedures could not be used due to plugged process lines and the exclusion of moderator materials (water or finely divided organic substances) for criticality safety. The presence of highly enriched uranium in poorly defined quantity and configuration led to concerns for criticality safety, nuclear materials accountability, and physical security. A project was established to eliminate these concerns by cleaning and/or removing the process vessels, piping, and cells and sending the recovered Uranium Bearing Material (UBM) to secure storage. A key element of this project was the design of a system for collecting and transporting dry solids to a location where they could be loaded into critically favorable storage cans

  3. Estimating Torque Imparted on Spacecraft Using Telemetry

    Lee, Allan Y.; Wang, Eric K.; Macala, Glenn A.


    There have been a number of missions with spacecraft flying by planetary moons with atmospheres; there will be future missions with similar flybys. When a spacecraft such as Cassini flies by a moon with an atmosphere, the spacecraft will experience an atmospheric torque. This torque could be used to determine the density of the atmosphere. This is because the relation between the atmospheric torque vector and the atmosphere density could be established analytically using the mass properties of the spacecraft, known drag coefficient of objects in free-molecular flow, and the spacecraft velocity relative to the moon. The density estimated in this way could be used to check results measured by science instruments. Since the proposed methodology could estimate disturbance torque as small as 0.02 N-m, it could also be used to estimate disturbance torque imparted on the spacecraft during high-altitude flybys.

  4. Computer simulation of spacecraft/environment interaction

    Krupnikov, K.K.; Makletsov, A.A.; Mileev, V.N.; Novikov, L.S.; Sinolits, V.V.


    This report presents some examples of a computer simulation of spacecraft interaction with space environment. We analysed a set data on electron and ion fluxes measured in 1991-1994 on geostationary satellite GORIZONT-35. The influence of spacecraft eclipse and device eclipse by solar-cell panel on spacecraft charging was investigated. A simple method was developed for an estimation of spacecraft potentials in LEO. Effects of various particle flux impact and spacecraft orientation are discussed. A computer engineering model for a calculation of space radiation is presented. This model is used as a client/server model with WWW interface, including spacecraft model description and results representation based on the virtual reality markup language

  5. Computer simulation of spacecraft/environment interaction

    Krupnikov, K K; Mileev, V N; Novikov, L S; Sinolits, V V


    This report presents some examples of a computer simulation of spacecraft interaction with space environment. We analysed a set data on electron and ion fluxes measured in 1991-1994 on geostationary satellite GORIZONT-35. The influence of spacecraft eclipse and device eclipse by solar-cell panel on spacecraft charging was investigated. A simple method was developed for an estimation of spacecraft potentials in LEO. Effects of various particle flux impact and spacecraft orientation are discussed. A computer engineering model for a calculation of space radiation is presented. This model is used as a client/server model with WWW interface, including spacecraft model description and results representation based on the virtual reality markup language.

  6. Small Body Exploration Technologies as Precursors for Interstellar Robotics

    Noble, Robert; /SLAC; Sykes, Mark V.; /PSI, Tucson


    The scientific activities undertaken to explore our Solar System will be the same as required someday at other stars. The systematic exploration of primitive small bodies throughout our Solar System requires new technologies for autonomous robotic spacecraft. These diverse celestial bodies contain clues to the early stages of the Solar System's evolution as well as information about the origin and transport of water-rich and organic material, the essential building blocks for life. They will be among the first objects studied at distant star systems. The technologies developed to address small body and outer planet exploration will form much of the technical basis for designing interstellar robotic explorers. The Small Bodies Assessment Group, which reports to NASA, initiated a Technology Forum in 2011 that brought together scientists and technologists to discuss the needs and opportunities for small body robotic exploration in the Solar System. Presentations and discussions occurred in the areas of mission and spacecraft design, electric power, propulsion, avionics, communications, autonomous navigation, remote sensing and surface instruments, sampling, intelligent event recognition, and command and sequencing software. In this paper, the major technology themes from the Technology Forum are reviewed, and suggestions are made for developments that will have the largest impact on realizing autonomous robotic vehicles capable of exploring other star systems.

  7. Automation, robotics, and inflight training for manned Mars missions

    Holt, Alan C.


    The automation, robotics, and inflight training requirements of manned Mars missions will be supported by similar capabilities developed for the space station program. Evolutionary space station onboard training facilities will allow the crewmembers to minimize the amount of training received on the ground by providing extensive onboard access to system and experiment malfunction procedures, maintenance procedures, repair procedures, and associated video sequences. Considerable on-the-job training will also be conducted for space station management, mobile remote manipulator operations, proximity operations with the Orbital Maneuvering Vehicle (and later the Orbit Transfer Vehicle), and telerobotics and mobile robots. A similar approach could be used for manned Mars mission training with significant additions such as high fidelity image generation and simulation systems such as holographic projection systems for Mars landing, ascent, and rendezvous training. In addition, a substantial increase in the use of automation and robotics for hazardous and tedious tasks would be expected for Mars mission. Mobile robots may be used to assist in the assembly, test and checkout of the Mars spacecraft, in the handling of nuclear components and hazardous chemical propellent transfer operations, in major spacecraft repair tasks which might be needed (repair of a micrometeroid penetration, for example), in the construction of a Mars base, and for routine maintenance of the base when unmanned.

  8. Optimal Autonomous Spacecraft Resiliency Maneuvers Using Metaheuristics


    This work was accepted for published by the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) Journal of Spacecraft and Rockets in July 2014...publication in the AIAA Journal of Spacecraft and Rockets . Chapter 5 introduces an impulsive maneuvering strategy to deliver a spacecraft to its final...upon arrival r2 and v2 , respectively. The variable T2 determines the time of flight needed to make the maneuver, and the variable θ2 determines the

  9. Ulysses spacecraft control and monitoring system

    Hamer, P. A.; Snowden, P. J.


    The baseline Ulysses spacecraft control and monitoring system (SCMS) concepts and the converted SCMS, residing on a DEC/VAX 8350 hardware, are considered. The main functions of the system include monitoring and displaying spacecraft telemetry, preparing spacecraft commands, producing hard copies of experimental data, and archiving spacecraft telemetry. The SCMS system comprises over 20 subsystems ranging from low-level utility routines to the major monitoring and control software. These in total consist of approximately 55,000 lines of FORTRAN source code and 100 VMS command files. The SCMS major software facilities are described, including database files, telemetry processing, telecommanding, archiving of data, and display of telemetry.

  10. Operationally Responsive Spacecraft Subsystem, Phase I

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Saber Astronautics proposes spacecraft subsystem control software which can autonomously reconfigure avionics for best performance during various mission conditions....

  11. Multi-robot control interface

    Bruemmer, David J [Idaho Falls, ID; Walton, Miles C [Idaho Falls, ID


    Methods and systems for controlling a plurality of robots through a single user interface include at least one robot display window for each of the plurality of robots with the at least one robot display window illustrating one or more conditions of a respective one of the plurality of robots. The user interface further includes at least one robot control window for each of the plurality of robots with the at least one robot control window configured to receive one or more commands for sending to the respective one of the plurality of robots. The user interface further includes a multi-robot common window comprised of information received from each of the plurality of robots.

  12. Robots: l'embarras de richesses [:survey of robots available

    Meieran, H.; Brittain, K.; Sturkey, R.


    A survey of robots available for use in the nuclear industry is presented. Two new categories of mobile robots have been introduced since the last survey (April 1987): pipe crawlers and underwater robots. The number of robots available has risen to double what it was two years ago and four times what it was in 1986. (U.K.)

  13. Biomass feeds vegetarian robot; Biomassa voedt vegetarische robot

    Van den Brandt, M. [Office for Science and Technology, Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, Washington (United States)


    This brief article addresses the EATR robot (Energetically Autonomous Tactical Robot) that was developed by Cyclone Power and uses biomass as primary source of energy for propulsion. [Dutch] Een kort artikel over de door Cyclone Power ontwikkelde EATR-robot (Energetically Autonomous Tactical Robot) die voor de voortdrijving biomassa gebruikt als primaire energiebron.

  14. Can we trust robots?

    Coeckelbergh, Mark


    Can we trust robots? Responding to the literature on trust and e-trust, this paper asks if the question of trust is applicable to robots, discusses different approaches to trust, and analyses some preconditions for trust. In the course of the paper a phenomenological-social approach to trust is

  15. Robotics in endoscopy.

    Klibansky, David; Rothstein, Richard I


    The increasing complexity of intralumenal and emerging translumenal endoscopic procedures has created an opportunity to apply robotics in endoscopy. Computer-assisted or direct-drive robotic technology allows the triangulation of flexible tools through telemanipulation. The creation of new flexible operative platforms, along with other emerging technology such as nanobots and steerable capsules, can be transformational for endoscopic procedures. In this review, we cover some background information on the use of robotics in surgery and endoscopy, and review the emerging literature on platforms, capsules, and mini-robotic units. The development of techniques in advanced intralumenal endoscopy (endoscopic mucosal resection and endoscopic submucosal dissection) and translumenal endoscopic procedures (NOTES) has generated a number of novel platforms, flexible tools, and devices that can apply robotic principles to endoscopy. The development of a fully flexible endoscopic surgical toolkit will enable increasingly advanced procedures to be performed through natural orifices. The application of platforms and new flexible tools to the areas of advanced endoscopy and NOTES heralds the opportunity to employ useful robotic technology. Following the examples of the utility of robotics from the field of laparoscopic surgery, we can anticipate the emerging role of robotic technology in endoscopy.

  16. Neuronal nets in robotics

    Jimenez Sanchez, Raul


    The paper gives a generic idea of the solutions that the neuronal nets contribute to the robotics. The advantages and the inconveniences are exposed that have regarding the conventional techniques. It also describe the more excellent applications as the pursuit of trajectories, the positioning based on images, the force control or of the mobile robots management, among others

  17. Modelling of Hydraulic Robot

    Madsen, Henrik; Zhou, Jianjun; Hansen, Lars Henrik


    This paper describes a case study of identifying the physical model (or the grey box model) of a hydraulic test robot. The obtained model is intended to provide a basis for model-based control of the robot. The physical model is formulated in continuous time and is derived by application...

  18. Robots that care

    Looije, R.; Arendsen, J.; Saldien, J.; Vanderborght, B.; Broekens, J.; Neerincx, M.


    Many countries face pressure on their health care systems. To alleviate this pressure, 'self care' and 'self monitoring' are often stimulated with the use of new assistive technologies. Social robotics is a research area where robotic technology is optimized for various social functions. One of

  19. Robotics and Industrial Arts.

    Edmison, Glenn A.; And Others

    Robots are becoming increasingly common in American industry. By l990, they will revolutionize the way industry functions, replacing hundreds of workers and doing hot, dirty jobs better and more quickly than the workers could have done them. Robotics should be taught in high school industrial arts programs as a major curriculum component. The…

  20. Robotics in medicine

    Kuznetsov, D. N.; Syryamkin, V. I.


    Modern technologies play a very important role in our lives. It is hard to imagine how people can get along without personal computers, and companies - without powerful computer centers. Nowadays, many devices make modern medicine more effective. Medicine is developing constantly, so introduction of robots in this sector is a very promising activity. Advances in technology have influenced medicine greatly. Robotic surgery is now actively developing worldwide. Scientists have been carrying out research and practical attempts to create robotic surgeons for more than 20 years, since the mid-80s of the last century. Robotic assistants play an important role in modern medicine. This industry is new enough and is at the early stage of development; despite this, some developments already have worldwide application; they function successfully and bring invaluable help to employees of medical institutions. Today, doctors can perform operations that seemed impossible a few years ago. Such progress in medicine is due to many factors. First, modern operating rooms are equipped with up-to-date equipment, allowing doctors to make operations more accurately and with less risk to the patient. Second, technology has enabled to improve the quality of doctors' training. Various types of robots exist now: assistants, military robots, space, household and medical, of course. Further, we should make a detailed analysis of existing types of robots and their application. The purpose of the article is to illustrate the most popular types of robots used in medicine.

  1. Multi-robot caravanning

    Denny, Jory; Giese, Andrew; Mahadevan, Aditya; Marfaing, Arnaud; Glockenmeier, Rachel; Revia, Colton; Rodriguez, Samuel; Amato, Nancy M.


    of waypoints. At the heart of our algorithm is the use of leader election to efficiently exploit the unique environmental knowledge available to each robot in order to plan paths for the group, which makes it general enough to work with robots that have

  2. Going Green Robots

    Nelson, Jacqueline M.


    In looking at the interesting shapes and sizes of old computer parts, creating robots quickly came to the author's mind. In this article, she describes how computer parts can be used creatively. Students will surely enjoy creating their very own robots while learning about the importance of recycling in the society. (Contains 1 online resource.)

  3. Reflection on robotic intelligence

    Bartneck, C.


    This paper reflects on the development or robots, both their physical shape as well as their intelligence. The later strongly depends on the progress made in the artificial intelligence (AI) community which does not yet provide the models and tools necessary to create intelligent robots. It is time

  4. Robots Cannot Lie

    Borggreen, Gunhild


    En analyse af den japanske robot-menneske teaterstykke Hataraku Watashi med fokus på Austins og Butlers begreb om performativitet.......En analyse af den japanske robot-menneske teaterstykke Hataraku Watashi med fokus på Austins og Butlers begreb om performativitet....

  5. Intelligent robot action planning

    Vamos, T; Siegler, A


    Action planning methods used in intelligent robot control are discussed. Planning is accomplished through environment understanding, environment representation, task understanding and planning, motion analysis and man-machine communication. These fields are analysed in detail. The frames of an intelligent motion planning system are presented. Graphic simulation of the robot's environment and motion is used to support the planning. 14 references.

  6. Robot Vision Library

    Howard, Andrew B.; Ansar, Adnan I.; Litwin, Todd E.; Goldberg, Steven B.


    The JPL Robot Vision Library (JPLV) provides real-time robot vision algorithms for developers who are not vision specialists. The package includes algorithms for stereo ranging, visual odometry and unsurveyed camera calibration, and has unique support for very wideangle lenses

  7. Innovations in robotic surgery.

    Gettman, Matthew; Rivera, Marcelino


    Developments in robotic surgery have continued to advance care throughout the field of urology. The purpose of this review is to evaluate innovations in robotic surgery over the past 18 months. The release of the da Vinci Xi system heralded an improvement on the Si system with improved docking, the ability to further manipulate robotic arms without clashing, and an autofocus universal endoscope. Robotic simulation continues to evolve with improvements in simulation training design to include augmented reality in robotic surgical education. Robotic-assisted laparoendoscopic single-site surgery continues to evolve with improvements on technique that allow for tackling previously complex pathologic surgical anatomy including urologic oncology and reconstruction. Last, innovations of new surgical platforms with robotic systems to improve surgeon ergonomics and efficiency in ureteral and renal surgery are being applied in the clinical setting. Urologic surgery continues to be at the forefront of the revolution of robotic surgery with advancements in not only existing technology but also creation of entirely novel surgical systems.

  8. Assessment of Spatial Navigation and Docking Performance During Simulated Rover Tasks

    Wood, S. J.; Dean, S. L.; De Dios, Y. E.; Moore, S. T.


    INTRODUCTION: Following long-duration exploration transits, pressurized rovers will enhance surface mobility to explore multiple sites across Mars and other planetary bodies. Multiple rovers with docking capabilities are envisioned to expand the range of exploration. However, adaptive changes in sensorimotor and cognitive function may impair the crew s ability to safely navigate and perform docking tasks shortly after transition to the new gravitoinertial environment. The primary goal of this investigation is to quantify post-flight decrements in spatial navigation and docking performance during a rover simulation. METHODS: Eight crewmembers returning from the International Space Station will be tested on a motion simulator during four pre-flight and three post-flight sessions over the first 8 days following landing. The rover simulation consists of a serial presentation of discrete tasks to be completed within a scheduled 10 min block. The tasks are based on navigating around a Martian outpost spread over a 970 sq m terrain. Each task is subdivided into three components to be performed as quickly and accurately as possible: (1) Perspective taking: Subjects use a joystick to indicate direction of target after presentation of a map detailing current orientation and location of the rover with the task to be performed. (2) Navigation: Subjects drive the rover to the desired location while avoiding obstacles. (3) Docking: Fine positioning of the rover is required to dock with another object or align a camera view. Overall operator proficiency will be based on how many tasks the crewmember can complete during the 10 min time block. EXPECTED RESULTS: Functionally relevant testing early post-flight will develop evidence regarding the limitations to early surface operations and what countermeasures are needed. This approach can be easily adapted to a wide variety of simulated vehicle designs to provide sensorimotor assessments for other operational and civilian populations.

  9. Robot skills for manufacturing

    Pedersen, Mikkel Rath; Nalpantidis, Lazaros; Andersen, Rasmus Skovgaard


    -asserting robot skills for manufacturing. We show how a relatively small set of skills are derived from current factory worker instructions, and how these can be transferred to industrial mobile manipulators. General robot skills can not only be implemented on these robots, but also be intuitively concatenated...... products are introduced by manufacturers. In order to compete on global markets, the factories of tomorrow need complete production lines, including automation technologies that can effortlessly be reconfigured or repurposed, when the need arises. In this paper we present the concept of general, self...... in running production facilities at an industrial partner. It follows from these experiments that the use of robot skills, and associated task-level programming framework, is a viable solution to introducing robots that can intuitively and on the fly be programmed to perform new tasks by factory workers....

  10. Robotics at Savannah River

    Byrd, J.S.


    A Robotics Technology Group was organized at the Savannah River Laboratory in August 1982. Many potential applications have been identified that will improve personnel safety, reduce operating costs, and increase productivity using modern robotics and automation. Several active projects are under way to procure robots, to develop unique techniques and systems for the site's processes, and to install the systems in the actual work environments. The projects and development programs are involved in the following general application areas: (1) glove boxes and shielded cell facilities, (2) laboratory chemical processes, (3) fabrication processes for reactor fuel assemblies, (4) sampling processes for separation areas, (5) emergency response in reactor areas, (6) fuel handling in reactor areas, and (7) remote radiation monitoring systems. A Robotics Development Laboratory has been set up for experimental and development work and for demonstration of robotic systems

  11. Evidence for robots.

    Shenoy, Ravikiran; Nathwani, Dinesh


    Robots have been successfully used in commercial industry and have enabled humans to perform tasks which are repetitive, dangerous and requiring extreme force. Their role has evolved and now includes many aspects of surgery to improve safety and precision. Orthopaedic surgery is largely performed on bones which are rigid immobile structures which can easily be performed by robots with great precision. Robots have been designed for use in orthopaedic surgery including joint arthroplasty and spine surgery. Experimental studies have been published evaluating the role of robots in arthroscopy and trauma surgery. In this article, we will review the incorporation of robots in orthopaedic surgery looking into the evidence in their use. © The Authors, published by EDP Sciences, 2017.

  12. Robotics: The next step?

    Broeders, Ivo A M J


    Robotic systems were introduced 15 years ago to support complex endoscopic procedures. The technology is increasingly used in gastro-intestinal surgery. In this article, literature on experimental- and clinical research is reviewed and ergonomic issues are discussed. literature review was based on Medline search using a large variety of search terms, including e.g. robot(ic), randomized, rectal, oesophageal, ergonomics. Review articles on relevant topics are discussed with preference. There is abundant evidence of supremacy in performing complex endoscopic surgery tasks when using the robot in an experimental setting. There is little high-level evidence so far on translation of these merits to clinical practice. Robotic systems may appear helpful in complex gastro-intestinal surgery. Moreover, dedicated computer based technology integrated in telepresence systems opens the way to integration of planning, diagnostics and therapy. The first high tech add-ons such as near infrared technology are under clinical evaluation. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Towards Versatile Robots Through Open Heterogeneous Modular Robots

    Lyder, Andreas

    arises, a new robot can be assembled rapidly from the existing modules, in contrast to conventional robots, which require a time consuming and expensive development process. In this thesis we define a modular robot to be a robot consisting of dynamically reconfigurable modules. The goal of this thesis......Robots are important tools in our everyday life. Both in industry and at the consumer level they serve the purpose of increasing our scope and extending our capabilities. Modular robots take the next step, allowing us to easily create and build various robots from a set of modules. If a problem...... is to increase the versatility and practical usability of modular robots by introducing new conceptual designs. Until now modular robots have been based on a pre-specified set of modules, and thus, their functionality is limited. We propose an open heterogeneous design concept, which allows a modular robot...

  14. Rover Low Gain Antenna Qualification for Deep Space Thermal Environments

    Ramesham, Rajeshuni; Amaro, Luis R.; Brown, Paula R.; Usiskin, Robert; Prater, Jack L.


    A method to qualify the Rover Low Gain Antenna (RLGA) for use during the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) mission has been devised. The RLGA antenna must survive all ground operations, plus the nominal 670 Martian sol mission that includes the summer and winter seasons of the Mars thermal environment. This qualification effort was performed to verify that the RLGA design, its bonding, and packaging processes are adequate. The qualification test was designed to demonstrate a survival life of three times more than all expected ground testing, plus a nominal 670 Martian sol missions. Baseline RF tests and a visual inspection were performed on the RLGA hardware before the start of the qualification test. Functional intermittent RF tests were performed during thermal chamber breaks over the course of the complete qualification test. For the return loss measurements, the RLGA antenna was moved to a test area. A vector network analyzer was calibrated over the operational frequency range of the antenna. For the RLGA, a simple return loss measurement was performed. A total of 2,010 (3 670 or 3 times mission thermal cycles) thermal cycles was performed. Visual inspection of the RLGA hardware did not show any anomalies due to the thermal cycling. The return loss measurement results of the RLGA antenna after the PQV (Package Qualification and Verification) test did not show any anomalies. The antenna pattern data taken before and after the PQV test at the uplink and downlink frequencies were unchanged. Therefore, the developed design of RLGA is qualified for a long-duration MSL mission.

  15. Exploiting Child-Robot Aesthetic Interaction for a Social Robot

    Lee, Jae-Joon; Kim, Dae-Won; Kang, Bo-Yeong


    A social robot interacts and communicates with humans by using the embodied knowledge gained from interactions with its social environment. In recent years, emotion has emerged as a popular concept for designing social robots. Several studies on social robots reported an increase in robot sociability through emotional imitative interactions between the robot and humans. In this paper conventional emotional interactions are extended by exploiting the aesthetic theories that the sociability of ...

  16. Towards Versatile Robots Through Open Heterogeneous Modular Robots

    Lyder, Andreas


    Robots are important tools in our everyday life. Both in industry and at the consumer level they serve the purpose of increasing our scope and extending our capabilities. Modular robots take the next step, allowing us to easily create and build various robots from a set of modules. If a problem arises, a new robot can be assembled rapidly from the existing modules, in contrast to conventional robots, which require a time consuming and expensive development process. In this thesis we define a ...

  17. Interaction with Soft Robotic Tentacles

    Jørgensen, Jonas


    Soft robotics technology has been proposed for a number of applications that involve human-robot interaction. In this tabletop demonstration it is possible to interact with two soft robotic platforms that have been used in human-robot interaction experiments (also accepted to HRI'18 as a Late...

  18. Robots: An Impact on Education.

    Blaesi, LaVon; Maness, Marion


    Provides background information on robotics and robots, considering impact of robots on the workplace and concerns of the work force. Discusses incorporating robotics into the educational system at all levels, exploring industry-education partnerships to fund introduction of new technology into the curriculum. New funding sources and funding…

  19. Remote controlled data collector robot

    Jozsef Suto


    Full Text Available Today a general need for robots assisting different human activities rises. The goal of the present project is to develop a prototyping robot, which provides facilities for attaching and fitting different kinds of sensors and actuators. This robot provides an easy way to turn a general purpose robot into a special function one.

  20. Dynamical Behavior of Multi-Robot Systems Using Lattice Gas Automata

    Cameron, S.M.; Robinett, R.; Stantz, K.M.; Trahan, M.W.; Wagner, J.S.


    Recent attention has been given to the deployment of an adaptable sensor array realized by multi-robotic systems. Our group has been studying the collective behavior of autonomous, multi-agent systems and their applications in the area of remote-sensing and emerging threats. To accomplish such tasks, an interdisciplinary research effort at Sandia National Laboratories are conducting tests in the fields of sensor technology, robotics, and multi-robotic and multi-agents architectures. Our goal is to coordinate a constellation of point sensors that optimizes spatial coverage and multivariate signal analysis using unmanned robotic vehicles (e.g., RATLERs, Robotic All-ten-sin Lunar Exploration Rover-class vehicles). Overall design methodology is to evolve complex collective behaviors realized through simple interaction (kinetic) physics and artificial intelligence to enable real-time operational responses to emerging threats. This paper focuses on our recent work understanding the dynamics of many-body systems using the physics-based hydrodynamic model of lattice gas automata. Three design features are investigated. One, for single-speed robots, a hexagonal nearest-neighbor interaction topology is necessary to preserve standard hydrodynamic flow. Two, adaptability, defined by the swarm's deformation rate, can be controlled through the hydrodynamic viscosity term, which, in turn, is defined by the local robotic interaction rules. Three, due to the inherent non-linearity of the dynamical equations describing large ensembles, development of stability criteria ensuring convergence to equilibrium states is developed by scaling information flow rates relative to a swarm's hydrodynamic flow rate. An initial test case simulates a swarm of twenty-five robots that maneuvers past an obstacle while following a moving target. A genetic algorithm optimizes applied nearest-neighbor forces in each of five spatial regions distributed over the simulation domain. Armed with

  1. Nuclear Electric Propulsion Application: RASC Mission Robotic Exploration of Venus

    McGuire, Melissa L.; Borowski, Stanley K.; Packard, Thomas W.


    The following paper documents the mission and systems analysis portion of a study in which Nuclear Electric Propulsion (NEP) is used as the in-space transportation system to send a series of robotic rovers and atmospheric science airplanes to Venus in the 2020 to 2030 timeframe. As part of the NASA RASC (Revolutionary Aerospace Systems Concepts) program, this mission analysis is meant to identify future technologies and their application to far reaching NASA missions. The NEP systems and mission analysis is based largely on current technology state of the art assumptions. This study looks specifically at the performance of the NEP transfer stage when sending a series of different payload package point design options to Venus orbit.

  2. TTEthernet for Integrated Spacecraft Networks

    Loveless, Andrew


    Aerospace projects have traditionally employed federated avionics architectures, in which each computer system is designed to perform one specific function (e.g. navigation). There are obvious downsides to this approach, including excessive weight (from so much computing hardware), and inefficient processor utilization (since modern processors are capable of performing multiple tasks). There has therefore been a push for integrated modular avionics (IMA), in which common computing platforms can be leveraged for different purposes. This consolidation of multiple vehicle functions to shared computing platforms can significantly reduce spacecraft cost, weight, and design complexity. However, the application of IMA principles introduces significant challenges, as the data network must accommodate traffic of mixed criticality and performance levels - potentially all related to the same shared computer hardware. Because individual network technologies are rarely so competent, the development of truly integrated network architectures often proves unreasonable. Several different types of networks are utilized - each suited to support a specific vehicle function. Critical functions are typically driven by precise timing loops, requiring networks with strict guarantees regarding message latency (i.e. determinism) and fault-tolerance. Alternatively, non-critical systems generally employ data networks prioritizing flexibility and high performance over reliable operation. Switched Ethernet has seen widespread success filling this role in terrestrial applications. Its high speed, flexibility, and the availability of inexpensive commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) components make it desirable for inclusion in spacecraft platforms. Basic Ethernet configurations have been incorporated into several preexisting aerospace projects, including both the Space Shuttle and International Space Station (ISS). However, classical switched Ethernet cannot provide the high level of network

  3. A robotic system for automation of logistics functions on the Space Station

    Martin, J. C.; Purves, R. B.; Hosier, R. N.; Krein, B. A.


    Spacecraft inventory management is currently performed by the crew and as systems become more complex, increased crew time will be required to perform routine logistics activities. If future spacecraft are to function effectively as research labs and production facilities, the efficient use of crew time as a limited resource for performing mission functions must be employed. The use of automation and robotics technology, such as automated warehouse and materials handling functions, can free the crew from many logistics tasks and provide more efficient use of crew time. Design criteria for a Space Station Automated Logistics Inventory Management System is focused on through the design and demonstration of a mobile two armed terrestrial robot. The system functionally represents a 0 gravity automated inventory management system and the problems associated with operating in such an environment. Features of the system include automated storage and retrieval, item recognition, two armed robotic manipulation, and software control of all inventory item transitions and queries.

  4. Spacecraft command and control using expert systems

    Norcross, Scott; Grieser, William H.


    This paper describes a product called the Intelligent Mission Toolkit (IMT), which was created to meet the changing demands of the spacecraft command and control market. IMT is a command and control system built upon an expert system. Its primary functions are to send commands to the spacecraft and process telemetry data received from the spacecraft. It also controls the ground equipment used to support the system, such as encryption gear, and telemetry front-end equipment. Add-on modules allow IMT to control antennas and antenna interface equipment. The design philosophy for IMT is to utilize available commercial products wherever possible. IMT utilizes Gensym's G2 Real-time Expert System as the core of the system. G2 is responsible for overall system control, spacecraft commanding control, and spacecraft telemetry analysis and display. Other commercial products incorporated into IMT include the SYBASE relational database management system and Loral Test and Integration Systems' System 500 for telemetry front-end processing.

  5. Towards Human-Friendly Efficient Control of Multi-Robot Teams

    Stoica, Adrian; Theodoridis, Theodoros; Barrero, David F.; Hu, Huosheng; McDonald-Maiers, Klaus


    This paper explores means to increase efficiency in performing tasks with multi-robot teams, in the context of natural Human-Multi-Robot Interfaces (HMRI) for command and control. The motivating scenario is an emergency evacuation by a transport convoy of unmanned ground vehicles (UGVs) that have to traverse, in shortest time, an unknown terrain. In the experiments the operator commands, in minimal time, a group of rovers through a maze. The efficiency of performing such tasks depends on both, the levels of robots' autonomy, and the ability of the operator to command and control the team. The paper extends the classic framework of levels of autonomy (LOA), to levels/hierarchy of autonomy characteristic of Groups (G-LOA), and uses it to determine new strategies for control. An UGVoriented command language (UGVL) is defined, and a mapping is performed from the human-friendly gesture-based HMRI into the UGVL. The UGVL is used to control a team of 3 robots, exploring the efficiency of different G-LOA; specifically, by (a) controlling each robot individually through the maze, (b) controlling a leader and cloning its controls to followers, and (c) controlling the entire group. Not surprisingly, commands at increased G-LOA lead to a faster traverse, yet a number of aspects are worth discussing in this context.

  6. Robotics for nuclear power plants

    Shiraiwa, Takanori; Watanabe, Atsuo; Miyasawa, Tatsuo


    Demand for robots in nuclear power plants is increasing of late in order to reduce workers' exposure to radiations. Especially, owing to the progress of microelectronics and robotics, earnest desire is growing for the advent of intellecturized robots that perform indeterminate and complicated security work. Herein represented are the robots recently developed for nuclear power plants and the review of the present status of robotics. (author)

  7. Robotics for nuclear power plants

    Shiraiwa, Takanori; Watanabe, Atsuo; Miyasawa, Tatsuo


    Demand for robots in nuclear power plants is increasing of late in order to reduce workers' exposure to radiations. Especially, owing to the progress of microelectronics and robotics, earnest desire is growing for the advent of intellecturized robots that perform indeterminate and complicated security work. Herein represented are the robots recently developed for nuclear power plants and the review of the present status of robotics.

  8. Toward cognitive robotics

    Laird, John E.


    Our long-term goal is to develop autonomous robotic systems that have the cognitive abilities of humans, including communication, coordination, adapting to novel situations, and learning through experience. Our approach rests on the recent integration of the Soar cognitive architecture with both virtual and physical robotic systems. Soar has been used to develop a wide variety of knowledge-rich agents for complex virtual environments, including distributed training environments and interactive computer games. For development and testing in robotic virtual environments, Soar interfaces to a variety of robotic simulators and a simple mobile robot. We have recently made significant extensions to Soar that add new memories and new non-symbolic reasoning to Soar's original symbolic processing, which should significantly improve Soar abilities for control of robots. These extensions include episodic memory, semantic memory, reinforcement learning, and mental imagery. Episodic memory and semantic memory support the learning and recalling of prior events and situations as well as facts about the world. Reinforcement learning provides the ability of the system to tune its procedural knowledge - knowledge about how to do things. Mental imagery supports the use of diagrammatic and visual representations that are critical to support spatial reasoning. We speculate on the future of unmanned systems and the need for cognitive robotics to support dynamic instruction and taskability.

  9. Future of robotic surgery.

    Lendvay, Thomas Sean; Hannaford, Blake; Satava, Richard M


    In just over a decade, robotic surgery has penetrated almost every surgical subspecialty and has even replaced some of the most commonly performed open oncologic procedures. The initial reports on patient outcomes yielded mixed results, but as more medical centers develop high-volume robotics programs, outcomes appear comparable if not improved for some applications. There are limitations to the current commercially available system, and new robotic platforms, some designed to compete in the current market and some to address niche surgical considerations, are being developed that will change the robotic landscape in the next decade. Adoption of these new systems will be dependent on overcoming barriers to true telesurgery that range from legal to logistical. As additional surgical disciplines embrace robotics and open surgery continues to be replaced by robotic approaches, it will be imperative that adequate education and training keep pace with technology. Methods to enhance surgical performance in robotics through the use of simulation and telementoring promise to accelerate learning curves and perhaps even improve surgical readiness through brief virtual-reality warm-ups and presurgical rehearsal. All these advances will need to be carefully and rigorously validated through not only patient outcomes, but also cost efficiency.

  10. Safeguarding a Lunar Rover with Wald's Sequential Probability Ratio Test

    Furlong, Michael; Dille, Michael; Wong, Uland; Nefian, Ara


    The virtual bumper is a safeguarding mechanism for autonomous and remotely operated robots. In this paper we take a new approach to the virtual bumper system by using an old statistical test. By using a modified version of Wald's sequential probability ratio test we demonstrate that we can reduce the number of false positive reported by the virtual bumper, thereby saving valuable mission time. We use the concept of sequential probability ratio to control vehicle speed in the presence of possible obstacles in order to increase certainty about whether or not obstacles are present. Our new algorithm reduces the chances of collision by approximately 98 relative to traditional virtual bumper safeguarding without speed control.

  11. Architecture for robot intelligence

    Peters, II, Richard Alan (Inventor)


    An architecture for robot intelligence enables a robot to learn new behaviors and create new behavior sequences autonomously and interact with a dynamically changing environment. Sensory information is mapped onto a Sensory Ego-Sphere (SES) that rapidly identifies important changes in the environment and functions much like short term memory. Behaviors are stored in a DBAM that creates an active map from the robot's current state to a goal state and functions much like long term memory. A dream state converts recent activities stored in the SES and creates or modifies behaviors in the DBAM.

  12. Robot NAO cantante

    Caballero Pamos, Adrián


    En los últimos años la robótica ha experimentado un crecimiento exponencial incorporando todo tipo de funcionalidades. Introducir el mundo musical en los robots es una de ellas. En este Trabajo Fin de Grado se presenta el desarrollo de un sistema que permite al robot NAO leer una partitura, analizarla y reproducirla a modo de canto. La finalidad del trabajo es que el robot actúe como un intérprete frente a una partitura musical tal y como lo haría un humano. Debe ser capaz de interpretar cual...

  13. Robots and plant safety

    Christensen, P.


    The application of robots in the harsh environments in which TELEMAN equipment will have to operate has large benefits, but also some drawbacks. The main benefit is the ability gained to perform tasks where people cannot go, while there is a possibility of inflicting damage to the equipment handled by the robot, and the plant when mobile robots are involved. The paper describes the types of possible damage and the precautions to be taken in order to reduce the frequency of the damaging events. A literature study for the topic only gave some insight into examples, but no means for a systematic treatment of the topic. (au) 16 refs

  14. Giochiamo con i robot

    Andrea Bonarini


    Full Text Available "Giochiamo con i robot" e' un laboratorio interattivo per grandi e piccini realizzato per l'edizione 2007 del Festival della Scienza di Genova. Lungo un percorso che va dalla telerobotica alla robotica evolutiva, il laboratorio sviluppa il tema di dare intelligenza ai robot. Questo percorso, le cui tappe sono le varie installazioni, si conclude nella "bottega" dove e' possibile costruire e programmare i propri robot o smontare e modificare quelli esposti durante il percorso didattico. I visitatori sono coinvolti in attivita' ludiche grazie alle quali possonoentrare in contatto con alcune delle idee potenti della robotica,

  15. Robots in mining

    Green, J


    Full Text Available ? • FOG – Fall of ground • Who is at risk? • What is the cost of incident? • What can we do about it? The Robot Potential • Technology • Conclusion © CSIR 2010 Slide 3 Yes Robots can improve mine safety Robot patrols unoccupied areas Generates a... risk map Additional tool Inform miners in making safe © CSIR 2010 Slide 4 Miner Safety Statistics • from DME (2010/03) • March 2010 • 490 000 employed • 400 000 suppliers1 • 9 died, 7 in rockfall incidents 2 • Prior year- March 2010 • 152...

  16. Odico Formwork Robotics

    Søndergaard, Asbjørn


    In the next decade or so, the widespread adoption of robotics is set to transform the construction industry: building techniques will become increasingly automated both on– and off–site, dispensing with manual labour and enabling greater cost and operational efficiencies. What unique opportunities......, however, does robotics afford beyond operational effectiveness explicitly for the practice of architecture? What is the potential for the serial production of non–standard elements as well as for varied construction processes? In order to scale up and advance the application of robotics, for both...

  17. Next Generation Light Robotics

    Glückstad, Jesper

    Light Robotics is a new field of research where ingredients from photonics, nanotechnology and biotechnology are put together in new ways to realize light-driven robotics at the smallest scales to solve major challenges primarily within the nanobio-domain but not limited hereto. Exploring the full...... potential of this new ‘drone-like’ light-printed, light-driven, light-actuated micro- and nano-robotics in challenging geometries requires a versatile and real-time reconfigurable light addressing that can dynamically track a plurality of tiny tools in 3D to ensure real-time continuous light...

  18. Optical Robotics in Mesoscopia

    Glückstad, Jesper


    With light’s miniscule momentum, shrinking robotics down to the micro-scale regime creates opportunities for exploiting optical forces and torques in advanced actuation and control at the nano- and micro-scale dimensions. Advancing light-driven nano- or micro-robotics requires the optimization...... of optimized shapes in the micro-robotics structures [1]. We designed different three-dimensional microstructures and had them fabricated by two-photon polymerization at BRC Hungary. These microstructures were then handled by our proprietary BioPhotonics Workstation to show proof-of-principle 3 demonstrations...

  19. Autonomous mobile robot teams

    Agah, Arvin; Bekey, George A.


    This paper describes autonomous mobile robot teams performing tasks in unstructured environments. The behavior and the intelligence of the group is distributed, and the system does not include a central command base or leader. The novel concept of the Tropism-Based Cognitive Architecture is introduced, which is used by the robots in order to produce behavior transforming their sensory information to proper action. The results of a number of simulation experiments are presented. These experiments include worlds where the robot teams must locate, decompose, and gather objects, and defend themselves against hostile predators, while navigating around stationary and mobile obstacles.


    Hidetsugu Suto


    Full Text Available A novel concept of media education called “robot literacy” is proposed. Here, robot literacy refers to the means of forming an appropriate relationship with intelligent robots. It can be considered a kind of media literacy. People who were born after the Internet age can be considered “digital natives” who have new morals and values and behave differently than previous generations in Internet societies. This can cause various problems among different generations. Thus, the necessity of media literacy education is increasing. Internet technologies, as well as robotics technologies are growing rapidly, and people who are born after the “home robot age,” whom the author calls “robot natives,” will be expected to have a certain degree of “robot literacy.” In this paper, the concept of robot literacy is defined and an approach to robot literacy education is discussed.

  1. Platform for Testing Robotic Vehicles on Simulated Terrain

    Lindemann, Randel


    The variable terrain tilt platform (VTTP) is a means of providing simulated terrain for mobility testing of engineering models of the Mars Exploration Rovers. The VTTP could also be used for testing the ability of other robotic land vehicles (and small vehicles in general) to move across terrain under diverse conditions of slope and surface texture, and in the presence of obstacles of various sizes and shapes. The VTTP consists mostly of a 16-ft-(4.88-m)-square tilt table. The tilt can be adjusted to any angle between 0 (horizontal) and 25 . The test surface of the table can be left bare; can be covered with hard, high-friction material; or can be covered with sand, gravel, and/or other ground-simulating material or combination of materials to a thickness of as much as 6 in. (approx. 15 cm). Models of rocks, trenches, and other obstacles can be placed on the simulated terrain. For example, for one of the Mars- Rover tests, a high-friction mat was attached to the platform, then a 6-in.- ( 15 cm) deep layer of dry, loose beach sand was deposited on the mat. The choice of these two driving surface materials was meant to bound the range of variability of terrain that the rover was expected to encounter on the Martian surface. At each of the different angles at which tests were performed, for some of the tests, rocklike concrete obstacles ranging in height from 10 to 25 cm were placed in the path of the rover (see figure). The development of the VTTP was accompanied by development of a methodology of testing to characterize the performance and modes of failure of a vehicle under test. In addition to variations in slope, ground material, and obstacles, testing typically includes driving up-slope, down-slope, cross-slope, and at intermediate angles relative to slope. Testing includes recording of drive-motor currents, wheel speeds, articulation of suspension mechanisms, and the actual path of the vehicle over the simulated terrain. The collected data can be used to

  2. Submarines, spacecraft and exhaled breath.

    Pleil, Joachim D; Hansel, Armin


    Foreword The International Association of Breath Research (IABR) meetings are an eclectic gathering of researchers in the medical, environmental and instrumentation fields; our focus is on human health as assessed by the measurement and interpretation of trace chemicals in human exhaled breath. What may have escaped our notice is a complementary field of research that explores the creation and maintenance of artificial atmospheres practised by the submarine air monitoring and air purification (SAMAP) community. SAMAP is comprised of manufacturers, researchers and medical professionals dealing with the engineering and instrumentation to support human life in submarines and spacecraft (including shuttlecraft and manned rockets, high-altitude aircraft, and the International Space Station (ISS)). Here, the immediate concerns are short-term survival and long-term health in fairly confined environments where one cannot simply 'open the window' for fresh air. As such, one of the main concerns is air monitoring and the main sources of contamination are CO(2) and other constituents of human exhaled breath. Since the inaugural meeting in 1994 in Adelaide, Australia, SAMAP meetings have been held every two or three years alternating between the North American and European continents. The meetings are organized by Dr Wally Mazurek (a member of IABR) of the Defense Systems Technology Organization (DSTO) of Australia, and individual meetings are co-hosted by the navies of the countries in which they are held. An overriding focus at SAMAP is life support (oxygen availability and carbon dioxide removal). Certainly, other air constituents are also important; for example, the closed environment of a submarine or the ISS can build up contaminants from consumer products, cooking, refrigeration, accidental fires, propulsion and atmosphere maintenance. However, the most immediate concern is sustaining human metabolism: removing exhaled CO(2) and replacing metabolized O(2). Another

  3. MAHLI on Mars: lessons learned operating a geoscience camera on a landed payload robotic arm

    Aileen Yingst, R.; Edgett, Kenneth S.; Kennedy, Megan R.; Krezoski, Gillian M.; McBride, Marie J.; Minitti, Michelle E.; Ravine, Michael A.; Williams, Rebecca M. E.


    The Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI) is a 2-megapixel, color camera with resolution as high as 13.9 µm pixel-1. MAHLI has operated successfully on the Martian surface for over 1150 Martian days (sols) aboard the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) rover, Curiosity. During that time MAHLI acquired images to support science and science-enabling activities, including rock and outcrop textural analysis; sand characterization to further the understanding of global sand properties and processes; support of other instrument observations; sample extraction site documentation; range-finding for arm and instrument placement; rover hardware and instrument monitoring and safety; terrain assessment; landscape geomorphology; and support of rover robotic arm commissioning. Operation of the instrument has demonstrated that imaging fully illuminated, dust-free targets yields the best results, with complementary information obtained from shadowed images. The light-emitting diodes (LEDs) allow satisfactory night imaging but do not improve daytime shadowed imaging. MAHLI's combination of fine-scale, science-driven resolution, RGB color, the ability to focus over a large range of distances, and relatively large field of view (FOV), have maximized the return of science and science-enabling observations given the MSL mission architecture and constraints.

  4. Foot Pedals for Spacecraft Manual Control

    Love, Stanley G.; Morin, Lee M.; McCabe, Mary


    Fifty years ago, NASA decided that the cockpit controls in spacecraft should be like the ones in airplanes. But controls based on the stick and rudder may not be best way to manually control a vehicle in space. A different method is based on submersible vehicles controlled with foot pedals. A new pilot can learn the sub's control scheme in minutes and drive it hands-free. We are building a pair of foot pedals for spacecraft control, and will test them in a spacecraft flight simulator.

  5. Robotized production systems observed in modern plants

    Saverina, A. N.


    Robots, robotized lines and sectors are no longer innovations in shops at automotive plants. The widespread robotization of automobile assembly operations is described in general terms. Robot use for machining operation is also discussed.

  6. Application of robotics in nuclear facilities

    Byrd, J.S.; Fisher, J.J.


    Industrial robots and other robotic systems have been successfully applied at the Savannah River nuclear site. These applications, new robotic systems presently under development, general techniques for the employment of robots in nuclear facilities, and future systems are discussed

  7. Human-machine Interface for Presentation Robot

    Krejsa, Jiří; Ondroušek, V.


    Roč. 6, č. 2 (2012), s. 17-21 ISSN 1897-8649 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z20760514 Keywords : human-robot interface * mobile robot * presentation robot Subject RIV: JD - Computer Applications, Robotics

  8. Continuum limbed robots for locomotion

    Mutlu, Alper

    This thesis focuses on continuum robots based on pneumatic muscle technology. We introduce a novel approach to use these muscles as limbs of lightweight legged robots. The flexibility of the continuum legs of these robots offers the potential to perform some duties that are not possible with classical rigid-link robots. Potential applications are as space robots in low gravity, and as cave explorer robots. The thesis covers the fabrication process of continuum pneumatic muscles and limbs. It also provides some new experimental data on this technology. Afterwards, the designs of two different novel continuum robots - one tripod, one quadruped - are introduced. Experimental data from tests using the robots is provided. The experimental results are the first published example of locomotion with tripod and quadruped continuum legged robots. Finally, discussion of the results and how far this technology can go forward is presented.

  9. Soft computing in advanced robotics

    Kobayashi, Ichiro; Kim, Euntai


    Intelligent system and robotics are inevitably bound up; intelligent robots makes embodiment of system integration by using the intelligent systems. We can figure out that intelligent systems are to cell units, while intelligent robots are to body components. The two technologies have been synchronized in progress. Making leverage of the robotics and intelligent systems, applications cover boundlessly the range from our daily life to space station; manufacturing, healthcare, environment, energy, education, personal assistance, logistics. This book aims at presenting the research results in relevance with intelligent robotics technology. We propose to researchers and practitioners some methods to advance the intelligent systems and apply them to advanced robotics technology. This book consists of 10 contributions that feature mobile robots, robot emotion, electric power steering, multi-agent, fuzzy visual navigation, adaptive network-based fuzzy inference system, swarm EKF localization and inspection robot. Th...

  10. Fundamentals of soft robot locomotion.

    Calisti, M; Picardi, G; Laschi, C


    Soft robotics and its related technologies enable robot abilities in several robotics domains including, but not exclusively related to, manipulation, manufacturing, human-robot interaction and locomotion. Although field applications have emerged for soft manipulation and human-robot interaction, mobile soft robots appear to remain in the research stage, involving the somehow conflictual goals of having a deformable body and exerting forces on the environment to achieve locomotion. This paper aims to provide a reference guide for researchers approaching mobile soft robotics, to describe the underlying principles of soft robot locomotion with its pros and cons, and to envisage applications and further developments for mobile soft robotics. © 2017 The Author(s).

  11. Conceptions of health service robots

    Lystbæk, Christian Tang


    Technology developments create rich opportunities for health service providers to introduce service robots in health care. While the potential benefits of applying robots in health care are extensive, the research into the conceptions of health service robot and its importance for the uptake...... of robotics technology in health care is limited. This article develops a model of the basic conceptions of health service robots that can be used to understand different assumptions and values attached to health care technology in general and health service robots in particular. The article takes...... a discursive approach in order to develop a conceptual framework for understanding the social values of health service robots. First a discursive approach is proposed to develop a typology of conceptions of health service robots. Second, a model identifying four basic conceptions of health service robots...

  12. Situation Assessment for Mobile Robots

    Beck, Anders Billesø

    Mobile robots have become a mature technology. The first cable guided logistics robots were introduced in the industry almost 60 years ago. In this time the market for mobile robots in industry has only experienced a very modest growth and only 2.100 systems were sold worldwide in 2011. In recent...... years, many other domains have adopted the mobile robots, such as logistics robots at hospitals and the vacuum robots in our homes. However, considering the achievements in research the last 15 years within perception and operation in natural environments together with the reductions of costs in modern...... sensor systems, the growth potential for mobile robot applications are enormous. Many new technological components are available to move the limits of commercial mobile robot applications, but a key hindrance is reliability. Natural environments are complex and dynamic, and thus the risk of robots...

  13. Robotics and remote systems applications

    Rabold, D.E.


    This article is a review of numerous remote inspection techniques in use at the Savannah River (and other) facilities. These include: (1) reactor tank inspection robot, (2) californium waste removal robot, (3) fuel rod lubrication robot, (4) cesium source manipulation robot, (5) tank 13 survey and decontamination robots, (6) hot gang valve corridor decontamination and junction box removal robots, (7) lead removal from deionizer vessels robot, (8) HB line cleanup robot, (9) remote operation of a front end loader at WIPP, (10) remote overhead video extendible robot, (11) semi-intelligent mobile observing navigator, (12) remote camera systems in the SRS canyons, (13) cameras and borescope for the DWPF, (14) Hanford waste tank camera system, (15) in-tank precipitation camera system, (16) F-area retention basin pipe crawler, (17) waste tank wall crawler and annulus camera, (18) duct inspection, and (19) deionizer resin sampling

  14. Sample Return Robot

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This Challenge requires demonstration of an autonomous robotic system to locate and collect a set of specific sample types from a large planetary analog area and...

  15. Biological Soft Robotics.

    Feinberg, Adam W


    In nature, nanometer-scale molecular motors are used to generate force within cells for diverse processes from transcription and transport to muscle contraction. This adaptability and scalability across wide temporal, spatial, and force regimes have spurred the development of biological soft robotic systems that seek to mimic and extend these capabilities. This review describes how molecular motors are hierarchically organized into larger-scale structures in order to provide a basic understanding of how these systems work in nature and the complexity and functionality we hope to replicate in biological soft robotics. These span the subcellular scale to macroscale, and this article focuses on the integration of biological components with synthetic materials, coupled with bioinspired robotic design. Key examples include nanoscale molecular motor-powered actuators, microscale bacteria-controlled devices, and macroscale muscle-powered robots that grasp, walk, and swim. Finally, the current challenges and future opportunities in the field are addressed.

  16. Robotic Comfort Zones

    Likhachev, Maxim; Arkin, Ronald C


    .... A review of the existing study of human comfort, especially regarding its presence in infants, is conducted with the goal being to determine the relevant characteristics for mapping it onto the robotics domain...

  17. Tank-automotive robotics

    Lane, Gerald R.


    To provide an overview of Tank-Automotive Robotics. The briefing will contain program overviews & inter-relationships and technology challenges of TARDEC managed unmanned and robotic ground vehicle programs. Specific emphasis will focus on technology developments/approaches to achieve semi- autonomous operation and inherent chassis mobility features. Programs to be discussed include: DemoIII Experimental Unmanned Vehicle (XUV), Tactical Mobile Robotics (TMR), Intelligent Mobility, Commanders Driver Testbed, Collision Avoidance, International Ground Robotics Competition (ICGRC). Specifically, the paper will discuss unique exterior/outdoor challenges facing the IGRC competing teams and the synergy created between the IGRC and ongoing DoD semi-autonomous Unmanned Ground Vehicle and DoT Intelligent Transportation System programs. Sensor and chassis approaches to meet the IGRC challenges and obstacles will be shown and discussed. Shortfalls in performance to meet the IGRC challenges will be identified.

  18. DOE Robotics Project


    This document provide the bimonthly progress reports on the Department of Energy (DOE) Robotics Project by the University of Michigan. Reports are provided for the time periods of December 90/January 91 through June 91/July 91. (FI)


    Federal Laboratory Consortium — The Maryland Robotics Center is an interdisciplinary research center housed in the Institute for Systems Research (link is external)within the A. James Clark School...

  20. Introduction to humanoid robotics

    Kajita, Shuuji; Harada, Kensuke; Yokoi, Kazuhito


    This book is for researchers, engineers, and students who are willing to understand how humanoid robots move and be controlled. The book starts with an overview of the humanoid robotics research history and state of the art. Then it explains the required mathematics and physics such as kinematics of multi-body system, Zero-Moment Point (ZMP) and its relationship with body motion. Biped walking control is discussed in depth, since it is one of the main interests of humanoid robotics. Various topics of the whole body motion generation are also discussed. Finally multi-body dynamics is presented to simulate the complete dynamic behavior of a humanoid robot. Throughout the book, Matlab codes are shown to test the algorithms and to help the reader´s understanding.