Robonaut To Get Eight-Legged Spidernaut Configuration?

NASA is thinking of outfitting their Robonaut robotic device used for telepresence work in space with the many legs of their Spidernaut project.


(Spidernaut and Robonaut)

"NASA Johnson Space Center scientists and engineers think an eight-legged spider configuration on a Robonaut can perform work that would either be too dangerous or would require a level of control that would be difficult for a human in a space suit! Spidernauts are also being developed to utilize their own "web" or space tether technology to move between orbiting superstructures.

With NASA plans to send a manned vehicle to Mars, asteroids and other destinations, the operational guidelines for the missions call for vehicles that are either too large or too fragile to be constructed here on Earth. NASA’s solution is to send several payloads into space to build new space stations that will become space-docks.

These stations will be the staging points for the construction of the vehicles needed to support human life during long inter-planetary journeys. To help with the building process, Spidernaut extra vehicular robots (EVRs) will be deployed!

The scientists at NASA liked the idea of using an arachnid-inspired EVR for the advantages its eight legs would bring to the table for space-borne construction.

The Spidernaut even has the ability to create its own "web", just like a real spider, for use in traveling between two structures. Using space tethers, the EVR can create a support system that will allow it to "crawl" around to the different areas it needs to go.

Fans of Charles Sheffield will no doubt recall the spider robot from his 1979 novel The Web Between the Worlds:

The two great ovoid bodies were hanging near the surface of the asteroid, about a hundred meters apart. The eight thin metallic legs were pointed downwards, balanced delicately a few centimeters clear of the surface. Between them, probing deep into the interior of the asteroid, was set the long proboscis. As Rob watched, the great, faceted eyes turned towards him. The Spiders were aware of his presence. Somewhere deep in their organic components lurked a hint of consciousness.

Corrie had been fascinated by them from the first moment she saw one. "Why eight legs?" she had asked.

Rob had shrugged. "It extrudes material like a spider. How many legs wouldi you have given it?

From Friends of Nasa (on Google +) via Winchell Chung (@Nyrath also on Google +). Be sure to check out his Man Amplifier page on Project Rho.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 7/2/2013)

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 ( 4 )

Related News Stories - (" Space Tech ")

Students! NASA Wants To 3D Print Your Tool Design In Space!
'Mass-produced only in the orbiting factories...'- Arthur C. Clarke, 1979

Flock Of Minisats Will Image The Earth
'We... dropped roughly a thousand eyes on Beta Hydri IV.'- Robert Silverberg, 1969.

The Manned Maneuvering Unit Story
'Little spurts of red-orange flame from the reaction pistol marked his companion's trail...'- Gordon A. Giles, 1937.

Bigelow's Inflatable BEAM Module Ready For ISS In 2015
'The bubble had inflatable seats and an inflatable table...'- Larry Niven, 1994.

 

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

Foodini 3D Printer
''...Food slot gave him flat reddish-brown bricks.'

Parrot Bebop Drone Pairs With Your Smartphone
'Over a radius of several miles Sonya's raytron apparatus could direct its flight [using] an image of all that the lens eye saw.'

SCRIBE Enables Distributed Genomically Encoded Memory
Genomic DNA for analog, rewritable, and flexible memory.

Artisanal 3D Printing By Martha Stewart
'Nanofax AG offers a technology that digitally reproduces objects, physically, at a distance.'

Knightscope Robot Security Guards Ready
'A robot guard appeared, streaking toward them across the field.'

Bullet-Proof Kevlar Woven Electronics
'Check the watch imprinted on his sleeve...'

USAF 'BATMAN' Wrist Display
'The tiny screen in the bracelet's center...'

CoBots - Collaborative Robots Ask Humans For Help
'Whenever a robot finds something it can't identify... You give it a good look.'

Shape-Shifting Carbon Fiber
'Its lines wavered, flowed, and then painfully reformed.'

'Digital Drugs' (Like Herbert's Semuta?) Dismays Saudis
'The effect (described as timeless, sustained ecstasy) is elicited by certain atonal vibrations...'

Mind Control Of Gene Expression In Mice
'We used your thought images almost entirely...'

Nixie Wrist-Ready Flying Selfie-Cam Drone
'He set his camera to follow him...'

DARPA Wants Airborne Launch Facility For Drones
This was tried with recon craft in WWII.

Lit Motors Self-Balancing Motorcycle
'He had never ridden any motorized device that lacked onboard steering and balance systems...'

Neuromorphic Brain-Chip Takes Flight
'Cultured brains on a slab.'

What Are Robots Thinking?
'Your clothes... give them to me.'

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.