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EDEN Versatile End-effector (EVE): An Autonomous Robotic System to Support Food Production on the Moon

Fonseca Prince, Andre and Lutze, Jean-Pascal and Maier, Maximilian and Friedl, Werner and Leidner, Daniel and Philpot, Claudia and Vrakking, Vincent and Ksenik, Eugen and Schubert, Daniel (2024) EDEN Versatile End-effector (EVE): An Autonomous Robotic System to Support Food Production on the Moon. In: 2024 IEEE Aerospace Conference, AERO 2024. IEEE. 2024 IEEE Aerospace Conference, 2024-03-03 - 2024-03-09, Big Sky, Montana, USA. doi: 10.1109/AERO58975.2024.10521422. ISBN 979-835030462-6. ISSN 1095-323X.

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Official URL: https://ieeexplore.ieee.org/document/10521422


Spacefaring nations have already expressed their plans for a sustainable human and robotic exploration on the Moon. This endeavor highlighted in the Global Exploration Roadmap (GER) foresees the development of infrastructures such as habitats, greenhouses, science labs, power plants, and mining facilities. Following this long-term vision, the German Aerospace Center (DLR) EDEN LUNA Project presents a Moon-analogue greenhouse facility which can demonstrate nearly closed-loop bio-regenerative life support systems technology and aim to produce fresh food for astronauts on the Moon in the near future. To optimize the food production and overcome challenges inherent to space missions, the EDEN Versatile End-effector (EVE) is integrated to the EDEN LUNA Greenhouse. This support system is a valuable payload which will automatize the tasks of the entire plant cultivation process: from germination to harvesting. The automatization is particularly relevant when the food production is intensified either seasonally or in a future scaled-up scenario. The EVE system encompasses a linear rail system installed on the ceiling of the greenhouse, a 7-Degrees of Freedom (DOF) autonomous robotic arm with high precision joint configuration, a sensorized robotic hand which can grasp delicate objects, and a sophisticated computer vision camera with plant monitoring capabilities. When in operation, the EVE system uses shared autonomy features. Thus, while it maintains the human in the loop for some of the decision-making processes, it can also function with some level of autonomy. A set of tasks previously defined by an astronaut in the end of an operational day and carried out autonomously during the night by the EVE system is one example of this human-robot collaboration. In addition, an optimized motion planning will ensure that the EVE system can perform constrained manipulation tasks in a limited workspace observing energy efficiency and safety requirements. This is explained in the paper with the abstraction of the different robotic control levels which range from the high-level view for non-experts in robotics to the motion planning level and their interconnections. The EVE system is currently in development at the DLR Robotic and Mechatronics Center (RMC) in Oberpfaffenhofen. In 2024, it will be integrated to the EDEN LUNA Greenhouse at the DLR Institute of Space Systems in Bremen. Finally, by the end of 2025, it will start operations in the ESA/DLR LUNA facility at the European Astronaut Centre (EAC) in Cologne.

Item URL in elib:https://elib.dlr.de/204596/
Document Type:Conference or Workshop Item (Speech)
Title:EDEN Versatile End-effector (EVE): An Autonomous Robotic System to Support Food Production on the Moon
AuthorsInstitution or Email of AuthorsAuthor's ORCID iDORCID Put Code
Fonseca Prince, AndreUNSPECIFIEDhttps://orcid.org/0000-0001-6820-3689161047878
Maier, MaximilianUNSPECIFIEDhttps://orcid.org/0000-0003-1502-696XUNSPECIFIED
Friedl, WernerUNSPECIFIEDhttps://orcid.org/0000-0003-3002-7274UNSPECIFIED
Leidner, DanielUNSPECIFIEDhttps://orcid.org/0000-0001-5091-7122UNSPECIFIED
Vrakking, VincentUNSPECIFIEDhttps://orcid.org/0000-0001-8633-2847UNSPECIFIED
Schubert, DanielUNSPECIFIEDhttps://orcid.org/0000-0003-4969-486X161047879
Date:13 May 2024
Journal or Publication Title:2024 IEEE Aerospace Conference, AERO 2024
Refereed publication:Yes
Open Access:Yes
Gold Open Access:No
In ISI Web of Science:No
Keywords:Space missions, Moon, Robot vision systems, Greenhouses, Production, End effectors, Planning
Event Title:2024 IEEE Aerospace Conference
Event Location:Big Sky, Montana, USA
Event Type:international Conference
Event Start Date:3 March 2024
Event End Date:9 March 2024
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 - Basic Technologies [RO], R - Project EDEN LUNA
Location: Oberpfaffenhofen
Institutes and Institutions:Institute of Robotics and Mechatronics (since 2013) > Mechatronic Systems
Institute of Space Systems
Deposited By: Fonseca Prince, Andre
Deposited On:06 Jun 2024 10:26
Last Modified:06 Jun 2024 10:28

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