USA flag logo/image

An Official Website of the United States Government

A Field Reconfigurable Manipulator for Rovers

Award Information

National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Award ID:
Program Year/Program:
2007 / SBIR
Agency Tracking Number:
Solicitation Year:
Solicitation Topic Code:
Solicitation Number:
Small Business Information
Traclabs, Inc.
100 Northeast Loop 410 Suite 520 San Antonio, TX -
View profile »
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No
Phase 1
Fiscal Year: 2007
Title: A Field Reconfigurable Manipulator for Rovers
Agency: NASA
Contract: NNJ07JB32C
Award Amount: $99,985.00


Robots will be precursors to human exploration of the lunar surface. They will be expected to prepare the lunar surface for human habitation as well as conduct scientific investigations. As humans arrive the robots should be able to shift to providing direct assistance to human exploration activities. Such tasks require a new generation of robotic vehicles -- a generation that has flexible, dexterous manipulation capabilities and adjustable software controllers that can shift between remote teleoperation, autonomy and co-located human interaction. Our innovation consists of two components. The first component is a reconfigurable, dexterous manipulator that is designed to be mounted on a mobile robot. The manipulator will be light-weight and low-power. It will contain a reconfigurable number of up to seven degrees-of-freedom. The second component is a software system that can adjust control of the manipulator from teleoperated to autonomous and that can control the mobile robot and the manipulator as a coordinated unit. We propose to implement a method called Coordinated Resolved Motion Control that will automatically and jointly control the rover as well as the manipulator such that the manipulator will stay away from singularities. Together these two innovations will substantially increase the capabilities of NASA rovers, making them more efficient and effective.

Principal Investigator:

Robert L. Burridge
Principal Investigator

Business Contact:

Jonathan C. Fast
Small Business Information at Submission:

Traclabs, Inc.
100 N.E. Loop 410, Suite 520 San Antonio, TX 78216

EIN/Tax ID: 202601412
Number of Employees:
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No