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Dec 01 2014

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Andy rover by Carnegie Mellon U to help compete for Lunar Xprize

It’s part of Astrobotic Technology’s team.

Andy’s wide stance, low center-of-gravity and high belly clearance combine for unprecedented stability, slope-climbing and straddling of rocks. Whittaker noted that Andy achieves its superb mobility with very wide wheels and light weight. Andy’s wheels are a foot in diameter, which is exceptional for a three-foot rover. Its weight on the moon will be less than 10 pounds.

Jon Anderson, a master’s degree student in robotics, led the mobility team. The team’s innovations gave Andy the softest footprint and greatest strength-to-weight ratio of any space rover to date. The rover has strong pulling power and a novel suspension for transferring that power to the ground.

They envision it exploring lunar pits and the possible caves that adjoin them, though if it goes into a cave, communications will likely be disrupted, so I hope they’ve built Andy with some autonomy and smarts to get out of the caves on its own.

SAL-UTE!

Permanent link to this article: http://www.newspaceraces.com/2014/12/01/andy-rover-by-carnegie-mellon-u-to-help-compete-for-lunar-xprize/

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