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A concept mission: Microbots for large-scale planetary surface and subsurface exploration
MIT, USA.
MIT, USA.
MIT, USA.
MIT, USA.
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2005 (English)In: Space technology and applications international forum: STAIF 2005 / [ed] Mohamed S El-Genk, College Park, MD: American Institute of Physics (AIP), 2005, p. 1449-1458Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

This paper presents a new mission concept for planetary exploration, based on the deployment of a large number of small spherical mobile robots ("microbots") over vast areas of a planet's surface and subsurface, including structures such as caves and near-surface crevasses (see Figure 1). This would allow extremely large-scale in situ analysis of terrain composition and history. This approach represents an alternative to rover and lander-based planetary exploration, which is limited to studying small areas of a planet's surface at a small number of sites. The proposed approach is also distinct from balloon or aerial vehicle-based missions, in that it would allow direct in situ measurement. In the proposed mission, a large number (i.e. hundreds or thousands) of cm-scale, sub-kilogram microbots would be distributed over a planet's surface by an orbital craft and would employ hopping, bouncing and rolling as a locomotion mode to reach scientifically interesting artifacts in very rugged terrain. They would be powered by high energy-density polymer "muscle" actuators, and equipped with a suite of miniaturized imagers, spectrometers, sampling devices, and chemical detection sensors to conduct in situ measurements of terrain and rock composition, structure, etc. Multiple microbots would coordinate to share information, cooperatively analyze large portions of a planet's surface or subsurface, and provide context for scientific measurements. © 2005 American Institute of Physics.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
College Park, MD: American Institute of Physics (AIP), 2005. p. 1449-1458
Series
AIP Conference Proceedings, ISSN 0094-243X ; 746
National Category
Robotics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hh:diva-20788DOI: 10.1063/1.1867276ISI: 000227496400165Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-77951467614ISBN: 0-7354-0230-2 OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hh-20788DiVA, id: diva2:586717
Conference
Space Technology and Applications International Forum: Forward with a New Age of Exploration, STAIF 2005, Albuquerque, New Mexico, 13-17 February, 2005
Available from: 2013-01-12 Created: 2013-01-12 Last updated: 2018-03-22Bibliographically approved

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Iagnemma, Karl

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CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

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Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
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  • Other style
More styles
Language
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  • Other locale
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Output format
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