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Collaborative Sensing and Mapping for IVA Robots

Award Information
Agency: National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Branch: N/A
Contract: 80NSSC22CA086
Agency Tracking Number: 211958
Amount: $740,922.00
Phase: Phase II
Program: SBIR
Solicitation Topic Code: Z5
Solicitation Number: SBIR_21_P2
Timeline
Solicitation Year: 2021
Award Year: 2022
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2022-05-05
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2024-05-04
Small Business Information
2309 Renard Place Southeast, Suite 200
Albuquerque, NM 87106-4284
United States
DUNS: 963612291
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: Yes
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 Tom Zurales
 (612) 250-6314
 thomas.zurales@metis-tech.com
Business Contact
 Joy Colucci
Phone: (650) 207-9378
Email: joy.colucci@metis-tech.com
Research Institution
N/A
Abstract

Metis Technology Solutions proposes to further mature its online, bi-directional, and robust collaborative SLAM and sensor co-registration technology known as Astrobee Localization and Collaborative Multi-layered Mapping (A-LCMM). The technology allows any Intra-Vehicular Activity (IVA) robot to collect data about its surrounding environment and share it with other robots via a central server to perform localization and mapping tasks. Sensors equipped to each IVA robot can be co-registered and fused with a collaboratively generated physical map of an environment which is stored on a central server. This fused multi-layered map of the environment consists of layers in which individual sensor data is registered with the physical map of the environment. The system is sensor and camera agnostic, meaning that any sensor and camera can be ingested by the system. This system not only eliminates the need for a ground team to manually update Astrobee maps, but also enables autonomous state assessment operations in space habitats which fills technical gaps identified in the Integrated System for Autonomous and Adaptive Caretaking (ISAAC) project. Developed hardware prototypes are to be used for validation in real-world environments by integrating the hardware and the software components of the system together. Beyond NASA, applications outside of Astrobee are not only feasible, but desirable. Improvements to the current state-of-the-art for collaborative SLAM not only impact Astrobee, but any system that uses multiple robots or SLAM in general. With the recent emergence of commercial space stations, autonomous cars, augmented reality (AR), and autonomous unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), there are many opportunities in which the technology can penetrate the market and make a ground breaking difference in the world of robot autonomy for years to come.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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