Photos: Nasa robots that will explore other worlds and disaster zones
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Nasa wants humanoid robots like the Valkyrie to one day help or even take the place of astronauts working in space.
This week Nasa gave Valkyrie prototypes to MIT and Northeastern University so they can help develop software to allow humanoid robots to complete space missions.
Robonaut 2 shows off its newly developed climbing legs, designed to allow the bot to move in zero gravity.
Currently being tested on board the International Space Station, the bot’s hands and fingers have been designed to work like a humans and it has cameras in its head for vision.
Designed to withstand 30 mph gusts and temperatures as low as minus 22 F, NASA’s polar rover has been demonstrated operating autonomously in Arctic conditions.
The robot known as GROVER, which stands for both Greenland Rover and Goddard Remotely Operated Vehicle for Exploration and Research, carries a ground-penetrating radar to analyze layers of snow and ice.
One of Nasa’s earlier experiments, the eight-legged Scorpion robot prototype was evaluated by NASArn Ames Research Center in 2005, as a potential model for exploring planets.
Robotic manufacturing system
This robot in NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama will help the agency build the biggest, lightweight composite parts ever made for space vehicles, lowering production costs and allowing for heavier payloads.
The Intelligent Robotics Group (IRG) at NASA’s Ames Research Center, developed the K10 robots to be remotely operated on planetary surfaces and act as scouts for human explorers.
The K10 robots drive autonomously and can traverse long distances over a wide variety of terrain. The K10 runs on custom, embedded software on a dual-core Linux laptop.
An artist’s concept showing how LEMUR (Limbed Excursion Mechanical Utility Robot) could inspect and maintain the International Space Station. The Lemur 3, being developed by Nasa Jet Propulsion Laboratory, sticks to surfaces using a gripping system based on how geckos cling to walls.