Telerobotics Design Issues for Space Construction

by Jeffrey H. Smith, JPL, United States,
Max Gyamfi, JPL, United States,
Kent Volkmer, JPL, United States,
Wayne Zimmerman, JPL, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Engineering, Construction, and Operations in Space


The efforts of a recent study aimed at identifying key issues and trade-offs associated with using a Flight Telerobotic Servicer (FTS) to aid in Space Station construction phase tasks is described. A methodology is presented that incorporates assessment of candidate construction phase tasks, telerobotic performance capabilities, development costs, and effects of operational constraints (Shuttle Transportation System (STS), attached payload, and proximity operations). Changes in the region of cost-effectiveness are examined under a variety of system design assumptions. A discussion of issues is presented with a focus on roles the FTS might serve, and a description of generic construction tasks which an FTS could perform within the next 8-10 years, as well as the future potential for ground operation of such systems.

Subject Headings: Space construction | Space stations | Automation and robotics | Space exploration | Flight | Construction methods | Benefit cost ratios | Construction costs

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