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Instrument deployment for Mars Rovers

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7 Author(s)
Pedersen, L. ; NASA Ames Res. Center, Moffett Field, CA, USA ; Bualat, M. ; Kunz, C. ; Lee, S.
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Future Mars rovers, such as the planned 2009 MSL rover, require sufficient autonomy to robustly approach rock targets and place an instrument in contact with them. It took the 1997 Sojourner Mars rover between 3 and 5 communications cycles to accomplish this. This paper describes the NASA Ames approach to robustly accomplishing single cycle instrument deployment, using the K9 prototype Mars rover. An off-board 3D site model is used to select science targets for the rover. K9 navigates to targets using deduced reckoning, and autonomously assesses the target area to determine where to place an arm mounted microscopic camera. Onboard K9 is a resource cognizant conditional executive, which extends the complexity and duration of operations that a can be accomplished without intervention from mission control.

Published in:

Robotics and Automation, 2003. Proceedings. ICRA '03. IEEE International Conference on  (Volume:2 )

Date of Conference:

14-19 Sept. 2003