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27 May 2005 Centaur: a mobile dexterous humanoid for surface operations
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Future human and robotic planetary expeditions could benefit greatly from expanded Extra-Vehicular Activity (EVA) capabilities supporting a broad range of multiple, concurrent surface operations. Risky, expensive and complex, conventional EVAs are restricted in both duration and scope by consumables and available manpower, creating a resource management problem. A mobile, highly dexterous Extra-Vehicular Robotic (EVR) system called Centaur is proposed to cost-effectively augment human astronauts on surface excursions. The Centaur design combines a highly capable wheeled mobility platform with an anthropomorphic upper body mounted on a three degree-of-freedom waist. Able to use many ordinary handheld tools, the robot could conserve EVA hours by relieving humans of many routine inspection and maintenance chores and assisting them in more complex tasks, such as repairing other robots. As an astronaut surrogate, Centaur could take risks unacceptable to humans, respond more quickly to EVA emergencies and work much longer shifts. Though originally conceived as a system for planetary surface exploration, the Centaur concept could easily be adapted for terrestrial military applications such as de-mining, surveillance and other hazardous duties.
© (2005) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Fredrik Rehnmark, Robert O. Ambrose, S. Michael Goza, Lucien Junkin, Peter D. Neuhaus, and Jerry E. Pratt "Centaur: a mobile dexterous humanoid for surface operations", Proc. SPIE 5804, Unmanned Ground Vehicle Technology VII, (27 May 2005);


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