JALURO Lunar Robot - 2-Wheeled Open Source

JALURO is an open source two-wheeled lunar exploration robot. The robot is the entry of Team FREDNET in the Google Lunar X-Prize competition. JALURO, which stands for Just Another LUnar RObot, carries its payload underslung between two wheels, as shown in the picture below.


(JALURO 2-wheeled lunar robot)

Charlie Masi, of Control Engineering, has this to say about the design:

Being underslung, it is in stable static equilibrium. Having independently controlled motors for each wheel, it is fairly simple to drive forward, backward, and to make turns in any direction with any radius from zero to infinity. It really is a neat concept!

The problem is that the underslung chassis acts like a pendulum or, more precisely, a rocking chair. Notice that the rocking amplitude seems almost random, depending mainly on the shape of any disturbing impulses. The problem is most obvious when the vehicle comes to a stop. The chassis can be seen to rock forward and back for some time after the forward motion ceases. This will be worse on the Moon, where there is no damping from air resistance to slow the motion down...

The good news is that this problem is apparently surmountable, with an equation of motion that is "fairly straightforward." Take a look at this test video of JALURO:

FREDNET is the only open-source entry in the X-Prize competition; they have a pretty exciting idea - that space is open for everyone! The following video contains a description of their program and vision.


(FREDNET mission statement video)

I'm sure there are lunar exploration robots elsewhere in science fiction, but somehow I was reminded of Arthur C. Clarke's spider tripod robot from his 1972 novel Rendezvous With Rama. It is also a "neat concept", and it has some obvious control challenges. (If you think a three-legged robot is impossible, take a look at the STriDER Tripedal Dynamic Experimental Robot .)

Learn more about Team FREDNET and their open-source approach. See also Ask Charlie comments on 2-wheel robotic vehicles. Also, take a look at nearly forty different Arthur C. Clarke ideas and inventions.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 1/21/2009)

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 ( 3 )

Related News Stories - (" Robotics ")

Robotic Lawnmower Fulfills SciFi Homeowner's Dreams
'The mower reached the edge of the lawn, clucked to itself like a contented hen...' - Clifford Simak, 1944.

MARLO Robot Attempts Wave Field
'It is apparent that he will walk before his human brother.' - Henry Slesar, 1958.

Walmart Shopping Cart Robots Will Follow You
'...the machine would carry his bag in its soft plastic jaws...' - John Brunner, 1975.

SpotMini Robot Pierson's Puppeteer-Style
Now they're kind of cute, right?

 

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

Will There Be A Digital Afterlife?
'A quick exchange of energies resulting from the relocation of discorporate states.'

ROCKY - Resistive Overload Combined With Kinetic Yo-Yo
'Joe got out the gravity-simulator harnesses..'

China Bans Self-Driving Car Testing
Innovation hits some bumps.

Robotic Lawnmower Fulfills SciFi Homeowner's Dreams
'The mower reached the edge of the lawn, clucked to itself like a contented hen...'

7-Eleven Drone Delivers Chix Sandwich And Slurpee
'It was a smooth ovoid floating a few inches from the floor...'

Beta-Ti3Au Titanium-Gold Alloy Hardest Tissue-Compatible Metal
It needs a more science-fictional name!

Solar Plane Circles The Globe
'Tropism-like pursuit of the sun across the sky as they recharged their batteries...'

Audiobooks - Fastest Growing Format In Publishing
'The public preferred lectons...'

SuperMeat - Crowdfunding Pohl/Kornbluth's Chicken Little
'Chicken Little, who would be sliced and packed to feed people from Baffinland to Little America.'

Martian-Grown Food Might Be Fine
'I donít want to come off as arrogant here, but Iím the best botanist on the planet.'

MARLO Robot Attempts Wave Field
'It is apparent that he will walk before his human brother.'

3RDiTEK Lifeblogging Headband Camera
'It's logging anyway - everything you see on duty goes into the black box.'

3D-Printed Biohybrid Is A Tissue-Engineered Robot
'The directing neurological tissue that forms the basis of the swibble is alive...'

Steerable Locusts Detect Explosives
Science fiction writers again provide a blueprint for the future.

No Human Drivers By 2040 - Israel
'It's been a criminal offense,,, to drive manually on a public highway.'

Graphene Ultracapacitor Airships For Heavy Lifting
'The war-balloons were to be kept for purposes of transportation of heavy articles...'

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.