NASA SBIR 2020-II Solicitation

Proposal Summary

Proposal Information

Proposal Number:
20-2- Z5.05-6066
Phase 1 Contract #:
Subtopic Title:
Lunar Rover Technologies for In-situ Resource Utilization and Exploration
Proposal Title:
Dynamically Reconfigurable Software and Mobility Architecture for Autonomous Planetary Rovers

Small Business Concern

Protoinnovations, LLC
100 43rd Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15201
(412) 916-8807                                                                                                                                                                                

Principal Investigator:

Samuel Chandler
312 1/2 Sapphire Way, PA 15225 - 1954
(774) 258-2047                                                                                                                                                                                

Business Official:

Dimitrios Apostolopoulos
5453 Albemarle Avenue, PA 15217 - 1132
(412) 916-8807                                                                                                                                                                                

Summary Details:

Estimated Technology Readiness Level (TRL) :                                                                                                                                                          
Begin: 4
End: 6
Technical Abstract (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words):

ProtoInnovations, LLC proposes to continue applied research and development, mature, and validate dynamically reconfigurable software and mobility architectures (DRSOMA) for robotic planetary rovers to maximize locomotion capabilities inherent on current rover designs as well as foster the creation of new rover designs that can switch between locally optimal locomotion controllers to enable globally optimal mobility in uncharacterized environments. DRSOMA’s architecture allows for a variety of intelligent locomotion controls to be exercised. Transition from control mode to control mode happens in real-time and is seamless. A rover equipped with DRSOMA can switch control modes on the fly, allowing it to adapt more effectively and efficiently to various terrain and environmental conditions. In addition, DRSOMA’s architecture facilities multiple perception and cognition software solutions. A DRSOMA-equipped rover can accommodate multiple sensors and sensing modalities, and a variety of perception algorithms to process and interpret sensor data. Lastly, DRSOMA accommodates and can effectively control rovers that change their electromechanical configuration on the fly, for example rovers with shape-changing wheels, semi-active and active suspensions, etc. 


Potential NASA Applications (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words):

DRSOMA will aid rover-based NASA missions for space science and exploration on the lunar surface during the Artemis (Moon to Mars) Campaign, and other future missions to the Moon and Mars. The Artemis program in particular requires sustainable surface operations that require robots, rovers, and people to all work together. DRSOMA will enable such robotic systems to operate well in more than one mode of locomotion and have real-time control adaptability to benefit ISRU, construction, scientific exploration, and other space science endeavors. 

Potential Non-NASA Applications (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words):

The DRSOMA and it underlying software modules could be applicable in wide range of robotic vehicles in transportation, construction, mining, and logistics to name a few. Such vehicles would benefit from software and controls for efficient, safe, and situation-responsive mobility and adaptability to ever-changing terrain conditions and forceful interactions with the operational environment.

Duration:     24

Form Generated on 05/13/2021 14:41:17