Robonaut Performs Hubble Space Telescope Repair Tasks

Robonaut is a dexterous humanoid telepresence robot developed by the Robot Systems Technology Branch at the Johnson Space Center. The intent of the project is to have an "EVA astronaut equivalent" on station; it can be activated and controlled by an earth-bound operator when needed.


(From Robonaut Telepresence Robot)

The Robonaut has a variety of sensors, including thermal, positional, tactile, force and torque instrumentation, with over 150 sensors per arm. The Robonaut boasts an onboard CPU with data acquisition and power management. It has an unusual structure:

Robonaut uses a chordate approach to data management, bringing all feedback to a central nervous system, where even low-level servo control is performed. This biologically inspired neurological approach is extended to left-right computational symmetry, sensor and power duality and kinematical redundancy, enabling learning and optimization in mechanical, electrical and software forms.

The operator controls the Robonaut using a special glove and mechanical exoskeleton. As the operator moves her arm and fingers, the motion is imitated by the robot.


(From Robonaut Telepresence Robot)

In a demonstration this past April, Robonaut Unit B was able to successfully work on the HST Aft Shroud Door trainer, simulating the most difficult tasks associated with HST repair activities. Robonaut was able to remove a pin securing a door, unlatch the door, disconnect an electrical cable, inspect it for bent pins and then reconnect it. One result of this demonstration is a planned improvement in fingertip sensors to provide better grasping control.

The basic insight that allows a complex robot like Robonaut to be controlled by natural human movement was achieved by science fiction writer Robert Heinlein. In his 1942 short story Waldo he described a way that a remote gripping arm could be controlled by an operator:

Waldo put his arms into the primary pair before him; all three pairs, including the secondary pair before the machine, came to life. Waldo flexed and extended his fingers gently; the two pairs of waldoes in the screen followed in exact, simultaneous parallelism.

Here is a cool video that demonstrates how the telepresence aspect of the system works. See the rest of the very detailed NASA site - Robonaut remote telefactoring robot; story from NASA's Robonaut: Bobafettish (Gizmodo).

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 5/28/2004)

Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.

| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |

Would you like to contribute a story tip? It's easy:
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add it here.

Comment/Join discussion ( 1 )

Related News Stories - (" Robotics ")

NASA's Robotic Mining Competition
''Dave,'[Powell] said. 'You're a stable, rock-bottom mining robot...'- Isaac Asimov, 1944.

Should Humanity Switch To Robotic Pets?
'What about an exact electric duplicate of your cat?'- Philip K. Dick, 1968.

Walker Robot Helps The Elderly
'The robant and the tiny old woman entered the control room slowly...'- Philip K. Dick, 1953.

Robot Chef Makes Thousands Of Dinners
'I got one of those new electronic cameras... and I could construct this one to do it exactly right down to the thousandth of a second.'- Anthony Boucher, 1943.

 

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

 

Current News

NASA's Robotic Mining Competition
''Dave,'[Powell] said. 'You're a stable, rock-bottom mining robot...'

Should Humanity Switch To Robotic Pets?
'What about an exact electric duplicate of your cat?'

L'Oreal To 3D Print Human Skin
'...She helped the doctor spray on surrogate skin.'

LG Display Creates OLED Wallpaper
'A television that unrolled like a poster...'

Cool Foldable Mini-Quadcopter
'Eddie pocketed the bee cam...'

NASA's Subvocal Speech System
'She took a subvocal input device from its rack...'

Cicada UAV Dropped In Swarms
'We... dropped roughly a thousand eyes on Beta Hydri IV.'

AI's Now Being Taught Anger
Actually the Prime Radiant was just a display device.

Cicret Interactive Skin Display Prototype
'A strip of readout skin on my wrist...'

Lily Camera Video Sport Selfie Drone
'He set his camera to follow him, and it hovered behind him like a large tame bee.'

Metal Composite Floats Your Boat
'A metal that was apparently as light as cork and stronger than steel...'

Six Terabyte Solid State Drive Just 2.5 Inches
'A man or woman could carry AIs or complete planetary dataspheres...'

Israeli 'Food Replicator' Inspired By Star Trek
What flavor would you like?

Robotic Trash Can Wants Your Garbage
'The can pivoted on broad rubber treads and rolled toward her...'

Microbes To Terraform Mars?
'Terraform the little rock...'

NASA FINDER To The Rescue In Nepal
'The antennae of the Life Detector atop the OP swept back and forth...'

More SF in the News Stories

More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.