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Robotic Arm for Assistive Free-Flyers

Award Information
Agency: National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Branch: N/A
Contract: NNX15CA48P
Agency Tracking Number: 154872
Amount: $124,990.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Solicitation Topic Code: Z5.01
Solicitation Number: N/A
Solicitation Year: 2015
Award Year: 2015
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2015-06-17
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2015-12-17
Small Business Information
One Mifflin Place, Suite 400
Cambridge, MA 02138-4946
United States
DUNS: 007341493
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 Douglas Barker
 Principal Enginner
 (888) 547-4100
Business Contact
 James English
Title: Business Official
Phone: (888) 547-4100
Research Institution

Energid Technologies proposes a lightweight kinematically redundant robot arm and software toolkit to extend the capabilities of Assistive Free-Flyers (AFFs). The arm will leverage Energid's existing design actuated with modified smart servos to reduce cost and weight and improve performance. A unique feature of the arm is universal end-of-arm-tooling interface that provides extensibility through standard mechanical, data, and power connectors. This interface will allow the arm to host a variety of sensors and tools for broad application. Energid's Actin software toolkit will be extended for control and simulation of AFFs with attached manipulators. Control techniques will be developed to enable novel modes of acrobatic maneuvering and whole-body manipulation. This control and simulation capability will apply to one or multiple arms attached to an AFF. The new control modes will enable use of the arms in perching and momentum conserving acrobatics, where the arm and thrusters are simultaneously actuated to reach a goal. The Actin simulation engine, which supports articulated dynamics, contact dynamics, and sensors, will be extended to include aerodynamics and thruster models for AFF design validation, mission planning, and testing. The new arm and toolkit will seamlessly transition between simulating terrestrial mobile robots and fielded AFFs in microgravity.

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

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