HOME  |  NEWS  |  BLOGS  |  MESSAGES  |  FEATURES  |  VIDEOS  |  WEBINARS  |  INDUSTRIES  |  FOCUS ON FUNDAMENTALS
  |  REGISTER  |  LOGIN  |  HELP
Blogs
Blog
Slideshow: Robots in Space
10/2/2012

Image 1 of 13      Next >

Justin is a humanoid robot being developed by the German Aerospace Center (DLR) for tasks that are too dangerous for humans, such as repairing orbiting satellites. Like humanoid robots designed for home use, humanoid space robots must be dexterous, mobile, and capable of carrying out tasks that require complex manipulation of tools and objects. They also need to be intelligent and have the ability to undertake manipulations that involve the use of both hands. Justin has compliant-controlled lightweight arms and four fingers on each of its two hands. It's remotely operated by a human, and its mobile platform allows it to operate autonomously at longer ranges. The platform has individually movable, spring-born wheels to match the robot's upper body movements during manipulation tasks. Also contributing to the robot's autonomy are photonic mixer device (PMD) sensors and cameras that allow it to make 3D reconstructions of its environment. Eventually, Justin will be mounted on its own satellite.   (Source: German Aerospace Center)
Justin is a humanoid robot being developed by the German Aerospace Center (DLR) for tasks that are too dangerous for humans, such as repairing orbiting satellites. Like humanoid robots designed for home use, humanoid space robots must be dexterous, mobile, and capable of carrying out tasks that require complex manipulation of tools and objects. They also need to be intelligent and have the ability to undertake manipulations that involve the use of both hands. Justin has compliant-controlled lightweight arms and four fingers on each of its two hands. It's remotely operated by a human, and its mobile platform allows it to operate autonomously at longer ranges. The platform has individually movable, spring-born wheels to match the robot's upper body movements during manipulation tasks. Also contributing to the robot's autonomy are photonic mixer device (PMD) sensors and cameras that allow it to make 3D reconstructions of its environment. Eventually, Justin will be mounted on its own satellite.
(Source: German Aerospace Center)

Image 1 of 13      Next >

Return to Article

View Comments: Oldest First|Newest First|Threaded View
<<  <  Page 4/4
Battar
User Rank
Platinum
Re: Robots in Space- Just when you weren't afraid to go back!
Battar   12/8/2012 10:57:31 AM
NO RATINGS
Sparky, seriously, would you be willing to leave earth and go live on the moon, in a life-support bubble? Think of the shipping rates from Amazon to your new address.

warren@fourward.com
User Rank
Platinum
Re: Robots in Space- Just when you weren't afraid to go back!
warren@fourward.com   3/29/2013 4:15:21 PM
NO RATINGS
There has been a robot in space for decades.  Who can forget "Warning, Warning Will Rogers."

I am not happy for robots in space.  I want humans!  It is our destiny.  Robots can suppliment but not replace.  It is our nature.  We just lack a government and space agency without vision.

But I repeat myself...

 

RogueMoon
User Rank
Platinum
attention spans: the Achilles heel of the space program
RogueMoon   5/23/2013 9:40:13 AM
NO RATINGS
good post, SparkyWatt.  Your multi-point response made a lot of good points particularly this one point you made at the last...

-----

Most of the people who object to this stuff do so because of money.  They scream about 100 billion dollar - 10 year programs as huge wastes of money.  100 billion dollars over 10 years in the US is less than $10 per family per month.  I would gladly pay that to put a colony on the moon.  People who beef about that simply have no sense of proportion.

-----

I agree with you 100% SparkyWatt.  It's the attention span of the American public that kills any program scope beyond a YouTube video made in a simulation lab.   It's not about the money.  There's plenty of money to bail out failing multi-national banks but not even a fraction of that for space exploration. JPL is the sweetheart becuase they get regular funding and use only the oldest vehicles to launch their tiny payloads.  Nice pictures, good streaming video, but what else?

Larger investments in space launch technology are only a waste of money until another 20-30 years from now you reap the benefits.  We are soon to get another post-Apollo generation to look back at NASA's lack of progress for the meager yet supposedly wise expenditure of money.  The human organism hasn't been back to the moon's surface for over 40 years.  Ever notice NASA doesn't run a comprehensive timeline history of its successful programs from start to present?  It starts with Yuri Gagarin, moves up to Apollo, fast forward to the early 80's shuttle highlights... then? the 90's, X-33, nope.  Space Station history from 1984 to present? nope they only fast-forward to highlight reel stuff post-launch 17 years later.  That's right, 17 years of reviews and billions of USD outsourced to Russia later.

We had the most practical yet ambitious program minted post-Columbia called Constellation.  Just as you said, the program got politicized, criticized for its cost (to be made in smaller multi-year payments, not the supposed lump sum figure that kept being posted in the news) then dumped right after the shuttle retired.  What we have today is the most ambition our government chooses to muster.

 I wanted to extend one important thing here that seems to not be widely understood.  This applies to space robotics too.  Whether it's lifting water, aluminum, silicon, or just the human meat bags flying the vehicle, its price per mass to orbit that is nearly the only the determinant.  It's not a manned vs. unmanned issue.  More payload to orbit for less money benefits EVERYONE.

All ambititous space exploration (beyond the ho-hum of today) comes down to having regular and far cheaper access to orbit from the Earth's gravity well.  This means the vehicle technology needs a quantum leap forward to make any real difference beyond either the "economy of scale" approach which fails to get taxpayer buy-in for the lump sum $100B+ price tag or the pseudo-open-source "dumping" approach currently practiced by today's space agency which builds old tech vehicles to yield results as high-tech as what was seen in the 1960's.

Like education of our children, the space program of today is an explicit function of the investment choices or lack of investment choices made in years and decades past.  It starts by having a plan and sticking to it.  The American public needs a longer attention span to make sure we get what we paid for.

 

<<  <  Page 4/4
Partner Zone
More Blogs
In this TED presentation, Wayne Cotter, a computer engineer turned standup comic, explains why engineers are natural comedians.
IBM's new SyNAPSE chip makes it possible for computers to both memorize and compute simultaneously.
We searched far and wide for the top employers for engineers. These companies were ranked by engineering professionals, engineering students, and engineering instructors and professors. Does your employer make the grade?
Hello, Moto. Join the iFixit team as it takes apart the world's first circular smartwatch, the Motorola Moto 360.
By implementing efficient and thorough quality-management processes, companies can help prevent or mitigate the effects of the supply-chain issues that reportedly plagued the Apple iPhone 6 before its release this week.
Design News Webinar Series
9/10/2014 11:00 a.m. California / 2:00 p.m. New York
7/23/2014 11:00 a.m. California / 2:00 p.m. New York
7/17/2014 11:00 a.m. California / 2:00 p.m. New York
6/25/2014 11:00 a.m. California / 2:00 p.m. New York
Quick Poll
The Continuing Education Center offers engineers an entirely new way to get the education they need to formulate next-generation solutions.
Sep 22 - 26, MCU Software Development A Step-by-Step Guide (Using a Real Eval Board)
SEMESTERS: 1  |  2  |  3  |  4  |  5  |  6


Focus on Fundamentals consists of 45-minute on-line classes that cover a host of technologies. You learn without leaving the comfort of your desk. All classes are taught by subject-matter experts and all are archived. So if you can't attend live, attend at your convenience.
Next Class: September 30 - October 2
Sponsored by Altera
Learn More   |   Login   |   Archived Classes
Twitter Feed
Design News Twitter Feed
Like Us on Facebook

Sponsored Content

Technology Marketplace

Copyright © 2014 UBM Canon, A UBM company, All rights reserved. Privacy Policy | Terms of Service