Design of Mobility, Manipulation and Vision System of a Conceptual Lunar Micro-Rover

Orger N. C., Cay Y., Karyot T. B.

7th International Conference on Recent Advances in Space Technologies (RAST), İstanbul, Turkey, 16 - 19 June 2015, pp.571-576 identifier

  • Publication Type: Conference Paper / Full Text
  • City: İstanbul
  • Country: Turkey
  • Page Numbers: pp.571-576
  • Istanbul Technical University Affiliated: Yes


The main interest of the research is to propose a conceptual lunar micro-rover (LMR) prototype design, and the primary technologies to be implemented in the LMR are chosen as hazard detecting, local mapping, path planning and sample retrieving. Since interplanetary CubeSat missions are gaining attention increasingly in the recent years, and miniaturized instruments are being developed as their radiation resistance increases, the LMR prototype is desired to contain a system similar to a 4U CubeSat in the main body while benefiting from the knowledge of interplanetary CubeSat designs and missions especially for radiation protection and temperature variations. The uneven lunar surface requires the LMR to sense the obstacles as well as other hazards in order to get closer to the crater regions. Therefore, an active laser triangulation system is used for hazard detecting and surface mapping. For the robotic manipulator arm, the ratio of gravity of the Moon to Earth is observed in the sample retrieval simulations. Finally, A* search and greedy search algorithms are implemented in the system to be used in the initial tests. The results showed that A* search algorithm over-performed greedy search while path planning in 3D environment. The next step for this project is to build prototype for verification of the performance and improve all abilities of the prototype towards the mission requirements.