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36 votes

Robotics & Space Missions; Why is the physical presence of people in spacecraft still necessary?

Between them, Spirit and Opportunity spent the equivalent of 22 years performing geology fieldwork on Mars. In that time, they managed a scientific output comparable to what a single geology grad ...
Mark's user avatar
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32 votes

Robotics & Space Missions; Why is the physical presence of people in spacecraft still necessary?

One of the most important reasons is that robots don't make great interview partners. A significant part of space missions is outreach and inspiring people. Another important part is giving people a ...
Jörg W Mittag's user avatar
15 votes
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What is the user interface of SSRMS

Like the SSRMS itself, it's rather complicated. The "control panel" is called the Robotics Workstation (RWS). There are two of them onboard the ISS. One is in the US Lab, the other in the ...
Organic Marble's user avatar
12 votes

Who is the space artist? Patterns on the Spheres robots on the ISS

These are some of the SPHERES satellites. They're little flying robots, driven by pressurised gas, intended to fly around inside the station. They were created for various indoor experiments, such as ...
Andy's user avatar
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11 votes

How does a command sent to a rocket or rover look like?

Most remotely controlled spacecraft and rovers do not use text-based commands. Instead, each command has a unique identifier, a command-specific data structure that contains data specific to that ...
David Hammen's user avatar
9 votes
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Did moving a Shuttle Remote Manipulator System (RMS) from one Orbiter to another have any impact on operations?

The RMS had six joints. (It is shown here holding the Orbiter inspection boom.) The rotational position of each joint was measured by internal 16-bit optical encoders giving a precision of 0.0055 deg....
Organic Marble's user avatar
9 votes
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How many different walk-off maneuvers can the ISS robotic arm do?

I'll have to let you count them because there are some ambiguities that arise from the use of the Mobile Transporter (MT)...but here are the possible walk-offs. These are the fixed base-capable Power ...
Organic Marble's user avatar
9 votes
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What are joint systems used for mounting manipulators to spacecrafts?

The Space Station Remote Manipulator System (SSRMS) is a seven-jointed teleoperated manipulator used on the International Space Station (ISS). Each end of the manipulator is composed of a Latching ...
Organic Marble's user avatar
8 votes
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What are robot arm singularities in the context of the Space Shuttle and/or ISS?

A singularity in this context is simply a configuration of the manipulator system in which a degree of freedom is lost. For example, for the Shuttle and ISS arms, the elbow singularity occurs when ...
Organic Marble's user avatar
7 votes
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What are these two SPHERES doing?

This student competition involved writing code to command the SPHERES. The scenario and requirements were presented as follows: The Red SPHERES Satellite is in trouble. Increasing numbers of ...
Organic Marble's user avatar
7 votes
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Who is the space artist? Patterns on the Spheres robots on the ISS

To answer the question as it is asked: the "artist" would most likely be one of the SPHERES PIs. However, the patterns, aesthetically pleasing though they may be, have a specific purpose other than "...
Tristan's user avatar
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7 votes

Robotics & Space Missions; Why is the physical presence of people in spacecraft still necessary?

Why is the physical presence of people in spacecraft still necessary? Because robotics and AI aren't so developed as to totally replace humans (who are very versatile). Having said that, there are ...
RonJohn's user avatar
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6 votes
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Could nanobots travel through space?

Nanobots are easy to describe, hard to design. Conceptually they are similar to a biological cell. They need to be able to extract energy from the environment, store that energy, store a copy of their ...
GremlinWranger's user avatar
6 votes
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Are all DC motors on the inside of the ISS brushless?

No. According to page 221 of NASA's 1998 report TM-98-206956/VOL1, Living Together in Space: The Design and Operation of the Life Support Systems on the International Space Station (page 255 of the ...
Camille Goudeseune's user avatar
6 votes

Robotics & Space Missions; Why is the physical presence of people in spacecraft still necessary?

Necessity Why is anything "necessary"? Who gets to define that? The biological imperative, if you will, is to survive, reproduce, and exploit every niche. Look all over the planet, and ...
Lawnmower Man's user avatar
6 votes

How does a command sent to a rocket or rover look like?

For shuttle which used a MIL-STD-1553 bus system for its flight critical functions, a command consisted of some header information (mostly used for validation), the address of the bus terminal unit, ...
Organic Marble's user avatar
5 votes
Accepted

What have been the most common causes of mishaps or failures with various cubesat mechanisms & components?

This graph shows the common failure modes experienced during the first 100 cubesat missions. Note the large fraction of failed missions that never made contact with the ground after launch; no ...
Organic Marble's user avatar
4 votes
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How exactly do the AstroBees implement propulsion and attitude control?

The paper Astrobee:Developing a Free-flyingRobot for the International Space Station explains the propulsion system rougly in two sentence: Astrobee’s propulsion system consists of a propulsion ...
GittingGud's user avatar
4 votes
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Will Astrobee be the second time that an autonomous, mobile robot will use ROS in space?

The most definitive answer I can find is that ROS's website lists Robonaut2 as the only robot using ROS under the space tag. If this is the case, it would in fact make Astrobee the second time a robot ...
called2voyage's user avatar
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4 votes
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How many ISS robotic manipulators are shown in this image, and what are their names?

Three. SSRMS (Space Station Remote Manipulator System) Dextre aka SPDM (Special Purpose Dextrous Manipulator) JEMRMS (Japanese Experiment Module Remote Manipulator System) The SPDM is pretty ...
Organic Marble's user avatar
4 votes

Why does NASA now call its rovers "robotic scientists?"

Answer merged into one larger one.
Paul McErlean's user avatar
4 votes
Accepted

Bishop airlock: explanation of the name?

I emailed Nanoracks with this question and I got an email back from the CEO Jeffrey Manber, who kindly gave me permission to quote him. Which is pretty impressive I must say. So though I am not really ...
Organic Marble's user avatar
4 votes

Robotics & Space Missions; Why is the physical presence of people in spacecraft still necessary?

Even if robots were still used for most of the fieldwork (which I think is likely even with a human presence because spacesuits, and the humans inside them, are fragile and expensive), having a human ...
Crazymoomin's user avatar
4 votes

Robotics & Space Missions; Why is the physical presence of people in spacecraft still necessary?

Why is the physical presence of people in spacecraft still necessary? The physical presence of people on most spacecraft is not necessary, not even those rated to carry passengers. Having humans ...
Ken Fabian's user avatar
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3 votes
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Why does NASA now call its rovers "robotic scientists?"

I do recall reading about this very issue in a book about the Spirit & Opportunity rovers. Working on Mars: Voyages of Scientific Discovery with the Mars Exploration Rovers by William J. Clancey, ...
Paul McErlean's user avatar
3 votes

Has any research been done in deep-cold robotics?

No, hold on. I don't believe I'm thinking about this the right way. IronEagle's comment helps. I'm thinking too much like an Earth guy. If you go down into those PSRs, you are not in a 30 degree ...
michael_goulish's user avatar
3 votes
Accepted

ROS is running on the Robonaut, but is the Robonaut running on the ISS (post 2015)?

As of March 4, 2018, it appears that they are mailing Robonaut home! Robonaut: The crew prepared and stowed Robonaut in preparation for return on SpaceX-14. Robonaut is a humanoid robot designed ...
Organic Marble's user avatar
3 votes
Accepted

How does JAXA's "Int-Ball" manage airflow to optimally navigate inside the ISS?

I think the Int-Ball uses all fans in a "push-configuration" and only does have passive air inlets in it's chassis. The internals of the chassis are therefore "empty" enough to enable sufficient ...
GittingGud's user avatar
3 votes

How many robots have been at, in, or on the ISS?

Here is a selection of robotic equipment that has been at/in/on the ISS, feel free to add additional references: Cell Biology Experiment Facility (CBEF) can autonomously control a centrifuge, among ...
3 votes

Why use fingers in EVA suits?

The answer to your headline question is that gloves with fingers have been used so far because remote-controlled robot hands with good tactile feedback are still an unsolved problem even now. Force-...
Mark Foskey's user avatar
  • 11.3k

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