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Space exploration from a shirtsleeve environment



 
 
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  #1  
Old October 2nd 05, 07:17 AM
zoltan
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Posts: n/a
Default Space exploration from a shirtsleeve environment

Our current concept of space exploration is too much like the way we do
things on earth. Space station assembly involved many hours of EVA,
astronauts in spacesuits trying to finish before their air supply runs
low. Our idea of lunar exploration entirely mimics earth activities.
The lunar lander encapsulates the astronauts. It lands on the moon,
they climb down a ladder, walk or stumble around in the dust, collect
samples, maybe drive around in a rover vehicle. In the end they climb
back and fly home.

I think it would be much more efficient to encapsulate the astronauts
in a confortable robotic vehicle that has manipulator arms to collect
samples, air conditioning, life support, communications, consumables,
motors, etc. We already have a lot of experience with such vehicles
from undersea exploration.

The astronauts could stay within their vehicles for long periods of
time, they could drive around and collect samples, look for water ice
and other resources. When they are finished they could dock their
vehicles to the ascent module and fly into orbit. There is no need to
ever wear spacesuits.

Assembly of large structures in the future may be better done in space
by astronauts flying around in their robotic vehicles that have
manipulator arms.

I have spent many years developing force reflecting teleoperation
systems that allow the operator to feel the forces that the robot arms
feel. This technology works very well when the time delay is short, the
operator is not far from the robot.

In general any acivity in space or on another celestial body could be
more effectively performed by designing robotic life support vehicles
around the individuals involved. This same principle applies even to
most environments on the earth, such as military activities.

I believe these vehicles can be more cheaply developed and built than
spacesuits, they can also save weight overall.

The astronauts can spend more time working, they can exert larger
forces, observe minute details better. They are also safer from
meteorite impacts and equipment malfunctions.

Ads
  #2  
Old October 2nd 05, 02:02 PM
Michael Rhino
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

"zoltan" wrote in message
oups.com...
Our current concept of space exploration is too much like the way we do
things on earth. Space station assembly involved many hours of EVA,
astronauts in spacesuits trying to finish before their air supply runs
low. Our idea of lunar exploration entirely mimics earth activities.
The lunar lander encapsulates the astronauts. It lands on the moon,
they climb down a ladder, walk or stumble around in the dust, collect
samples, maybe drive around in a rover vehicle. In the end they climb
back and fly home.

I think it would be much more efficient to encapsulate the astronauts
in a confortable robotic vehicle that has manipulator arms to collect
samples, air conditioning, life support, communications, consumables,
motors, etc. We already have a lot of experience with such vehicles
from undersea exploration.

The astronauts could stay within their vehicles for long periods of
time, they could drive around and collect samples, look for water ice
and other resources. When they are finished they could dock their
vehicles to the ascent module and fly into orbit. There is no need to
ever wear spacesuits.

Assembly of large structures in the future may be better done in space
by astronauts flying around in their robotic vehicles that have
manipulator arms.

I have spent many years developing force reflecting teleoperation
systems that allow the operator to feel the forces that the robot arms
feel. This technology works very well when the time delay is short, the
operator is not far from the robot.

In general any acivity in space or on another celestial body could be
more effectively performed by designing robotic life support vehicles
around the individuals involved. This same principle applies even to
most environments on the earth, such as military activities.

I believe these vehicles can be more cheaply developed and built than
spacesuits, they can also save weight overall.

The astronauts can spend more time working, they can exert larger
forces, observe minute details better. They are also safer from
meteorite impacts and equipment malfunctions.


Another way to use a shirtsleeve environment is to have astronauts stay in
one place and have robots scurry about on the surface of the moon. There
would be a habitat with a large garage. Vehicles could fetch things and
bring them to the astronauts. Astronauts could perform maintenance on the
vehicles.


  #3  
Old October 2nd 05, 04:10 PM
Josh Hill
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

On 1 Oct 2005 23:17:51 -0700, "zoltan" wrote:

Our current concept of space exploration is too much like the way we do
things on earth. Space station assembly involved many hours of EVA,
astronauts in spacesuits trying to finish before their air supply runs
low. Our idea of lunar exploration entirely mimics earth activities.
The lunar lander encapsulates the astronauts. It lands on the moon,
they climb down a ladder, walk or stumble around in the dust, collect
samples, maybe drive around in a rover vehicle. In the end they climb
back and fly home.

I think it would be much more efficient to encapsulate the astronauts
in a confortable robotic vehicle that has manipulator arms to collect
samples, air conditioning, life support, communications, consumables,
motors, etc. We already have a lot of experience with such vehicles
from undersea exploration.

The astronauts could stay within their vehicles for long periods of
time, they could drive around and collect samples, look for water ice
and other resources. When they are finished they could dock their
vehicles to the ascent module and fly into orbit. There is no need to
ever wear spacesuits.

Assembly of large structures in the future may be better done in space
by astronauts flying around in their robotic vehicles that have
manipulator arms.

I have spent many years developing force reflecting teleoperation
systems that allow the operator to feel the forces that the robot arms
feel. This technology works very well when the time delay is short, the
operator is not far from the robot.

In general any acivity in space or on another celestial body could be
more effectively performed by designing robotic life support vehicles
around the individuals involved. This same principle applies even to
most environments on the earth, such as military activities.

I believe these vehicles can be more cheaply developed and built than
spacesuits, they can also save weight overall.

The astronauts can spend more time working, they can exert larger
forces, observe minute details better. They are also safer from
meteorite impacts and equipment malfunctions.


If you're going to do that, why do the astronauts have to be on site?
Seems like it would be cheaper and safer for them to run the show from
the space station or a nearby vehicle or base.

--
Josh

"It was amazing I won. I was running against peace and prosperity
and incumbency." - George W. Bush
  #4  
Old October 2nd 05, 06:40 PM
Henry Spencer
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

In article .com,
zoltan wrote:
I think it would be much more efficient to encapsulate the astronauts
in a confortable robotic vehicle that has manipulator arms to collect
samples, air conditioning, life support, communications, consumables,
motors, etc. We already have a lot of experience with such vehicles
from undersea exploration.


Yes, and they're distinctly clumsy and difficult to get things done in;
they're used underwater simply because there's no good alternative.

For space, the idea has been suggested many times, but to date, hands and
feet simply work better.
--
spsystems.net is temporarily off the air; | Henry Spencer
mail to henry at zoo.utoronto.ca instead. |
  #6  
Old October 3rd 05, 07:05 PM
Nog
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default


"zoltan" wrote in message
oups.com...
Our current concept of space exploration is too much like the way we do
things on earth. Space station assembly involved many hours of EVA,
astronauts in spacesuits trying to finish before their air supply runs
low. Our idea of lunar exploration entirely mimics earth activities.
The lunar lander encapsulates the astronauts. It lands on the moon,
they climb down a ladder, walk or stumble around in the dust, collect
samples, maybe drive around in a rover vehicle. In the end they climb
back and fly home.

I think it would be much more efficient to encapsulate the astronauts
in a confortable robotic vehicle that has manipulator arms to collect
samples, air conditioning, life support, communications, consumables,
motors, etc. We already have a lot of experience with such vehicles
from undersea exploration.

The astronauts could stay within their vehicles for long periods of
time, they could drive around and collect samples, look for water ice
and other resources. When they are finished they could dock their
vehicles to the ascent module and fly into orbit. There is no need to
ever wear spacesuits.

Assembly of large structures in the future may be better done in space
by astronauts flying around in their robotic vehicles that have
manipulator arms.

I have spent many years developing force reflecting teleoperation
systems that allow the operator to feel the forces that the robot arms
feel. This technology works very well when the time delay is short, the
operator is not far from the robot.

In general any acivity in space or on another celestial body could be
more effectively performed by designing robotic life support vehicles
around the individuals involved. This same principle applies even to
most environments on the earth, such as military activities.

I believe these vehicles can be more cheaply developed and built than
spacesuits, they can also save weight overall.

The astronauts can spend more time working, they can exert larger
forces, observe minute details better. They are also safer from
meteorite impacts and equipment malfunctions.

We need a nuclear powered spacecraft to be build in earth or moon orbit on
on the moon. Only shuttles would fly from the nuclear space craft to the
earth.


  #7  
Old October 3rd 05, 10:08 PM
zoltan
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

Operating the robot arms is much easier if you are right there wired to
their controller electronics. Visibility is also much better if you use
your own eyes through a sheet of glass or polycarbonate.

  #8  
Old October 4th 05, 01:52 AM
Josh Hill
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

On 3 Oct 2005 14:08:09 -0700, "zoltan" wrote:

Operating the robot arms is much easier if you are right there wired to
their controller electronics. Visibility is also much better if you use
your own eyes through a sheet of glass or polycarbonate.


The second is a good point. Not sure if I understand the first; why
should hard wired control be more effective than a high bandwidth
radio link?

--
Josh

"It was amazing I won. I was running against peace and prosperity
and incumbency." - George W. Bush
  #9  
Old October 4th 05, 04:02 AM
zoltan
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

When you use force feedback, you get the feeling that you are doing the
manipulation yourself. This can only be done well if the time delay is
short, on the order of a few milliseconds, up to about maybe 20. Radio
links have time delays not only from time of flight of the signal but
also from the filters used in the transmit and receive electronics. I
worked with 5 mSeconds time delay and 1mS servo loop time and got
decent results. Some time delay is due to the kinematic transformations
done by the control computers. Reliability also suffers if you have to
maintain a radio link between the operator and the robot.

  #10  
Old October 4th 05, 09:08 AM
Alex Terrell
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default


zoltan wrote:
When you use force feedback, you get the feeling that you are doing the
manipulation yourself. This can only be done well if the time delay is
short, on the order of a few milliseconds, up to about maybe 20. Radio
links have time delays not only from time of flight of the signal but
also from the filters used in the transmit and receive electronics. I
worked with 5 mSeconds time delay and 1mS servo loop time and got
decent results. Some time delay is due to the kinematic transformations
done by the control computers. Reliability also suffers if you have to
maintain a radio link between the operator and the robot.


That's good information. It seems to largely preclude Earth based
operation of the robots, but I agree with Josh, moon based operation
over a wireless link is the way to go. A mix might be possible - simple
things like driving from A to B, transporting a cargo could be done by
an Earth based operator. Compex things like unscrewing a section of
pipe might be done from the lunar hab module.

I mentioned elsewhere that a large proportion of the astronaut time
would be spent in a repair shed. Robots would any pieces they couldn't
repair through the airlock. If Astronauts are going to spend 6-12
months on the moon, they'd want to minimise surface time.

See Mike Combs story for a good description:

http://members.aol.com/howiecombs/tnbttbt.htm

 




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