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Co-Localization for Planetary Rover Teams

Award Information
Agency: National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Branch: N/A
Contract: 80NSSC20C0026
Agency Tracking Number: 181473
Amount: $745,623.00
Phase: Phase II
Program: STTR
Solicitation Topic Code: T4
Solicitation Number: STTR_18_P2
Timeline
Solicitation Year: 2018
Award Year: 2020
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2020-01-13
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2022-01-12
Small Business Information
912 Fort Duquesne Boulevard, 3rd Floor, Pittsburgh, PA, 15222-4613
DUNS: 019738852
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Andrew Horchler
 (216) 272-3882
 andrew.horchler@astrobotic.com
Business Contact
 Andrew Horchler
Phone: (216) 272-3882
Email: andrew.horchler@astrobotic.com
Research Institution
 Carnegie Mellon University
 5000 Forbes Ave
Pittsburgh, PA, 15230-3890
 Federally funded R&D center (FFRDC)
Abstract
nbsp;This project is developing, testing, and integrating hardware systems and software techniques to enable the co-localization of teams of rovers, specifically targeting small-scale, low size, weight, and power rovers. Utilizing inertial measurement units (IMU), ultra-wideband (UWB) ranging radio, and a model-based approach to relative visual range, bearing, and pose estimation, each rover in a team of small rovers will demonstrate co-localization.The project will pursue several parallel threads of research and development and culminate in the integration of several of these threads to demonstrate the developed technology:nbsp;Maturation of ranging radio subsystem, including developing error models of the sensor system as well as environmental and power testing of UWB chipsets for flight readinessDevelopment of visual relative pose estimation and associated error models for these estimationsDevelopment and fabrication of a sensor package that includes camera, ranging system, IMU, and processing boardIntegration of the ranging system and visual relative pose estimation together in the sensor package, develop software that fuses the sensor information, and demonstrate the sensor systems co-localization functionality in a relevant mission context.The proposed research will develop simple and robust techniques for co-localizing multiple rovers in a planetary environment and perception/sensing technologies that incorporate considerations for relevant concepts of operations. We will demonstrate and benchmark a software framework and prototype sensor hardware for tightly coupled multi-agent co-localization in this Phase II contract.

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

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