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Slideshow: NASA's Ball Bots Explore Titan
1/10/2014

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In this concept drawing of a proposed mission, many Super Ball Bots could be deployed and bounce to a landing on a planet, moon, or asteroid before moving around and exploring the surface.   (Source: NASA Ames Research Center)
In this concept drawing of a proposed mission, many Super Ball Bots could be deployed and bounce to a landing on a planet, moon, or asteroid before moving around and exploring the surface.
(Source: NASA Ames Research Center)

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a.saji
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Re: NASA AND BALL BOTS
a.saji   7/31/2014 5:56:27 AM
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@William: Also you get different types of ideas being generated and most of the time those ideas will be put together and a final outcome will be generated out of that. 

William K.
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Platinum
Re: NASA AND BALL BOTS
William K.   7/30/2014 8:25:08 PM
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When you get enough good people working to develop a concept the results can be very impressive. That is what makes collaboration such a very great choice.

Ann R. Thryft
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Blogger
Re: Interesting
Ann R. Thryft   3/20/2014 11:09:54 AM
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ervin007, this is a ball, not a wheel, and designed for very low gravity not Earth. The slideshow may aid your understanding.



ervin0072002
User Rank
Gold
Interesting
ervin0072002   3/20/2014 9:29:38 AM
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Interesting... Nice concept. Why not use something tried like say the wheel? This seems to be an expantion of a wire mesh wheel.

Ann R. Thryft
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Blogger
Re: NASA AND BALL BOTS
Ann R. Thryft   1/21/2014 12:08:12 PM
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Thanks, bobjengr, glad this is good info for you. And thanks for the info on NIAC. I was impressed, too, by the collaboration effort on this particular project.

bobjengr
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Platinum
NASA AND BALL BOTS
bobjengr   1/18/2014 9:56:31 AM
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Ann--I think your post demonstrates the very best thing Design News Daily does--it keeps working non-NASA engineers "in the loop" by detailing fascinating technology.   In the NIAC project report, there are twenty-six (26 ) students involved; five (5) schools "state-side" and three (3) schools from various parts of the world.  Marvelous collaboration on this one project WITH published papers spreading the information.  I hate to admit it but you are absolutely correct in you assessment that manned space flight is probably not on the books for some time to come BUT, un-manned efforts seem to be progressing nicely as demonstrated by your post.  This is fascinating technology and obviously cutting-edge.  Once again--great information.

Ann R. Thryft
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Blogger
Re: One way Data collection only-?
Ann R. Thryft   1/16/2014 5:09:16 PM
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Glad you enjoyed this Jim. I find the tensegrity concept fascinating and clever. Steering the spheres from the distance of Titan to Earth is not feasible, so my understand is that these are planned to be autonomous.

JimT@Future-Product-Innovations
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One way Data collection only-?
JimT@Future-Product-Innovations   1/16/2014 2:45:28 PM
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Very interesting, thanks Ann.  The tensegrity spheres make me think of the little clickety-click spiders in Minority Report (Paramount Pictures, 2002) .  I would think these little rovers would have to be entirely autonomous and only report back findings, since attempting to steer them seems unlikely.

Ann R. Thryft
User Rank
Blogger
Re: exploration by robotic proxy
Ann R. Thryft   1/15/2014 1:29:10 PM
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William, there are detailed technical papers available by following the links we gave, which may answer your questions.

Ann R. Thryft
User Rank
Blogger
Re: exploration by robotic proxy
Ann R. Thryft   1/15/2014 1:27:16 PM
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Thanks, RogueMoon, will do. That won't be hard, since I really love space!

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