Telerobotic Capabilities for Space Station Operations

by David L. Akin, M.I.T., United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Engineering, Construction, and Operations in Space II


Over the past decade, the M.I.T. Space Systems Laboratory has accumulated an extensive data base on space operations typical of those planned for the Space Station, based on integrated systems tested in neutral buoyancy. This paper presents a summary of those tests involving either pure telerobotics, or telerobots in conjunction with extravehicular activity. The primary areas of application are structural assembly, maneuvering and docking tasks, and satellite servicing. Configuration overviews are presented on three telerobotic vehicles of the Space Systems Laboratory: the Beam Assembly Teleoperator, used for structural assembly and satellite servicing; the Multimode Proximity Operations Device, used for maneuvering and docking tasks; and the Apparatus for Space Telerobotic Operations, a second-generation device used primarily to date for cooperative EVA/telerobotic operations testing. All of these vehicles are self-contained, with full six-degree-of-freedom closed-loop flight control capabilities.

Subject Headings: Space stations | Space structures | Databases | Integrated systems | Buoyancy | Intelligent transportation systems | Laboratory tests | Robotics

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