NASA STTR 2007 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 07-1 T5.02-9829
RESEARCH SUBTOPIC TITLE: Algorithms for Autonomous Robotic Materials Handling
PROPOSAL TITLE: Coordinated Mobile Manipulation for Robotics Material Handling

NAME: Metrica, Inc. NAME: Carnegie Mellon University
STREET: 8620 North New Braunfels, Suite 603 STREET: 5000 Forbes Avenue
CITY: San Antonio CITY: Pittsburgh
STATE/ZIP: TX  78217 - 4486 STATE/ZIP: PA  15213 - 3815
PHONE: (210) 822-2310 PHONE: (412) 268-1161

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Sanjiv Singh

Expected Technology Readiness Level (TRL) upon completion of contract: 4 to 6

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
Robots will be precursors to human exploration of the lunar surface. They will be expected to prepare the lunar surface for human habitation as well as conduct scientific investigations. As humans arrive, first for short-term stays, the robots should be able to shift to providing direct assistance to human exploration activities. Such tasks require a new generation of robotic vehicles – a generation that has flexible, dexterous manipulation that can be scaled to include teams of machines. Since it will be impossible to tightly script complex operations ahead of time, it will be essential for planetary robots to be effective in unmodeled environments and unanticipated situations. Our proposal addresses four fundamental areas in mobile manipulation: 1) Motion Planning for Cooperative Mechanisms; 2) Task Sequencing & Monitoring; 3) Coordinated Control of Redundant Mechanisms; and 4) Human Robot Interface. Together, these innovations will create robots that can accomplish a wide variety of tasks to support NASA's exploration missions. We will demonstrate our approach using scenarios that involve several mobile robots with dexterous manipulators moving and assembling structures on the lunar surface and being supervised by remote operators.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
NASA's envisioned exploration missions rely heavily on robotic precursors and on robotic assistance to astronauts. Current space robots have very limited manipulation capabilities, especially autonomous manipulation capabilities. The technology developed in this proposal will increase the manipulation abilities of NASA robots to enable greater autonomy and more flexible mission operations. In addition to the long-term benefits to NASA of this technology, there will also be some short-term benefits to NASA's research program – the Exploration Technology Development Program (ETDP). Two areas of ETDP will be immediate beneficiaries of this technology. First, the Centaur robot at NASA JSC is already a mobile manipulator and can benefit directly from the technology developed in this proposal. Second, the K10 robot at NASA ARC is being equipped with a manipulator and can also benefit from our technology.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The military is one of the largest customers for robotic technology, especially in the Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) area. Unmanned vehicles are becoming more and more common in battlefield situations. The Future Combat Systems (FCS) program envisions manned and unmanned vehicles of all sizes working side-by-side. In addition, Congress has mandated that one-third of all military vehicles must be unmanned by 2015. Dexterous manipulation is required for many EOD and soldier assistance tasks. As the technology proves itself, we will move into non-military markets such as civilian EOD, urban search and rescue, hazardous environment clean-up and plant maintenance. We will also target the research robotics market, which is increasingly interested in testbeds for mobile manipulation.

NASA's technology taxonomy has been developed by the SBIR-STTR program to disseminate awareness of proposed and awarded R/R&D in the agency. It is a listing of over 100 technologies, sorted into broad categories, of interest to NASA.

Human-Robotic Interfaces
Integrated Robotic Concepts and Systems

Form Generated on 09-18-07 17:52