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Wheeled locomotion in milli-gravity: A technology experiment for the MMX Rover.

Buse, Fabian and Barthelmes, Stefan and Chalon, Maxime and Langofer, Viktor and Bertleff, Wieland and Lichtenheldt, Roy and Skibbe, Juliane and Bihler, Markus and Holderried, Roman and Reill, Josef and Vodermayer, Bernhard and Stubbig, Leon and Bayer, Ralph and Vernazza, Pierre and Murdoch, Naomi and Ulamec, Stephan and Michel, Patrick (2021) Wheeled locomotion in milli-gravity: A technology experiment for the MMX Rover. In: Proceedings of the International Astronautical Congress, IAC. 72nd International Astronautical Congress (IAC), 25.-29, Okt. 2021, Dubai, United Arab Emirates. ISSN 0074-1795.

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For the Martian Moons eXploration (MMX) mission of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), the French Centre National d'Études Spatiales (CNES) and the German Aerospace Center (DLR) jointly develop a wheeled exploration rover. This paper will discuss the planned analysis of wheeled locomotion of the MMX Rover. The focus will be on the expected challenges, the methods to overcome them and the plans on how to achieve a better understanding of wheeled locomotion in a milli-g environment by performing and analyzing a set of driving activities on Phobos. With the MMX Rover being the first wheeled system landing on a small body, there is no experience on how such a system will behave. Topography, rocks and regolith at the landing site will have a large impact on the achievable performance. To ensure safe operations, the locomotion system, developed at DLR-RMC, is designed to master a large variety of environments: The wheels are designed for optimal traction on soft regolith and the legs are actuated individually. Thereby, advanced maneuvers like inching locomotion allow the rover to climb slopes beyond its regular traction limits. In parallel to the hardware and software development, a detailed simulation environment was established, which both assists in the design of the rover and will serve as a planning tool during driving operations. During the mission, specific locomotion manoeuvres are performed and the downlinked data is then analyzed in detail to obtain a comprehensive understanding of the achieved performance and its constraints. The telemetry from the rover will be used to reconstruct the situation in simulation. After correlation, the simulator is used to get a deeper understanding of the wheeled locomotion dynamics under milli-g conditions. Of particular interest are the control strategies chosen and the influence of environmental characteristics on the rover's maneuverability, traction achieved, obstacle traversal, and controllability. Furthermore, the performance of specific components, like the traction generated by the wheels and the actuator performance, will be compared against expected behavior. During the mission, the findings will be directly used to improve the day-by-day planning of the rover's driving phases. Later, the results will be further analyzed and published to enable better designs with reduced uncertainties for future wheeled locomotion in low gravity environments. The paper will give details on the planned maneuvers, strategies to analyze them as well as the expected results.

Item URL in elib:https://elib.dlr.de/144876/
Document Type:Conference or Workshop Item (Speech)
Title:Wheeled locomotion in milli-gravity: A technology experiment for the MMX Rover.
AuthorsInstitution or Email of AuthorsAuthor's ORCID iDORCID Put Code
Buse, FabianUNSPECIFIEDhttps://orcid.org/0000-0002-2279-5735UNSPECIFIED
Barthelmes, StefanUNSPECIFIEDhttps://orcid.org/0000-0001-9619-5639UNSPECIFIED
Lichtenheldt, RoyUNSPECIFIEDhttps://orcid.org/0000-0002-2539-4910UNSPECIFIED
Skibbe, JulianeUNSPECIFIEDhttps://orcid.org/0000-0003-3194-4330UNSPECIFIED
Reill, JosefUNSPECIFIEDhttps://orcid.org/0000-0003-4092-063XUNSPECIFIED
Bayer, RalphUNSPECIFIEDhttps://orcid.org/0000-0003-2561-7974UNSPECIFIED
Vernazza, PierreLaboratoire d’Astrophysique de Marseille, 38 rue Frédéric Joliot-Curie, 13388 Marseille, FranceUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Murdoch, NaomiInstitut Supérieur de l’Aéronautique et de l’Espace (ISAE ‐ SUPAERO), Université de Toulouse, FranceUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Ulamec, StephanUNSPECIFIEDhttps://orcid.org/0000-0002-8856-4622UNSPECIFIED
Michel, PatrickObservatoire de la Côte d'Azur, FranceUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Date:October 2021
Journal or Publication Title:Proceedings of the International Astronautical Congress, IAC
Refereed publication:Yes
Open Access:Yes
Gold Open Access:No
In ISI Web of Science:No
Keywords:Phobos, rover, robotics, locomotion, milli-g
Event Title:72nd International Astronautical Congress (IAC)
Event Location:Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Event Type:international Conference
Event Dates:25.-29, Okt. 2021
Organizer:International Astronautical Federation (IAF)
HGF - Research field:Aeronautics, Space and Transport
HGF - Program:Space
HGF - Program Themes:Robotics
DLR - Research area:Raumfahrt
DLR - Program:R RO - Robotics
DLR - Research theme (Project):R - Project MMX [RO]
Location: Oberpfaffenhofen
Institutes and Institutions:Institute of System Dynamics and Control > Space System Dynamics
Institute of Robotics and Mechatronics (since 2013) > Mechatronic Systems
Institute of Robotics and Mechatronics (since 2013) > Analysis and Control of Advanced Robotic Systems
Deposited By: Buse, Fabian
Deposited On:22 Nov 2021 10:09
Last Modified:29 Mar 2023 00:49

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