A 3-D Miniature LIDAR System for Mobile Robot Navigation
Future lunar initiatives will demand sophisticated operation of mobile robotics platforms. In particular, lunar site operations will benefit from robots, both autonomous and tele-operated, that complement or replace human extravehicular activity (EVA). Three-dimensional sensing technology is at the heart of such functionality, enabling safe and reliable navigation in complex, dynamic environments, and serving as a valuable tool for inspection and site survey.
Honeybee Robotics therefore proposes to develop a small-envelope, high-performance scanning LIDAR (LIght Detection and Ranging) system, geared primarily towards mobile robot navigation, and secondarily to site inspection and survey. The proposed device would draw on the results of a design study conducted by Honeybee, under contract to DARPA, to develop a miniature LIDAR for a serpentine robotic platform. The baseline Honeybee 3D Miniature LIDAR (3DML) design uses an innovative scanning mechanism in conjunction with a pulse-time-of-flight optical rangefinding subsystem. The 3DML design, developed with expert input from Sensor Designs, Inc., an Oregon-based electro-optical systems consultancy, achieves a wide field of view and high resolution while maintaining an ultra-compact package size.
Phase I of this SBIR effort will focus on proof-of-concept of the opto-mechanical system through prototyping and test. Phase II will include development of a fieldable brassboard system prototype and a full path-to-flight study. Phase III will include commercialization of a 3DML unit for terrestrial research, and incorporation of 3DML into a flight program. As an experienced developer of miniature electromechanical systems for spaceflight, Honeybee is well-positioned to flight-qualify 3DML in Phase III.
Small Business Information at Submission:
Honeybee Robotics Ltd.
460 W 34th Street New York, NY 10001
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