single-rb.php

JRM Vol.24 No.6 pp. 1031-1039
doi: 10.20965/jrm.2012.p1031
(2012)

Paper:

Development of a Small, Lightweight Rover with Elastic Wheels for Lunar Exploration

Kojiro Iizuka*1, Tatsuya Sasaki*2, Hidenori Hama*2,
Atsuro Nishitani*2, Takeshi Kubota*3, and Ichiro Nakatani*4

*1International Young Researchers Empowerment Center, Shinshu University, 3-15-1 Tokida, Ueda-shi, Nagano 386-8567, Japan

*2Graduate School of Science and Technology, Shinshu University, 3-15-1 Tokida, Ueda-shi, Nagano 386-8567, Japan

*3IHI Corporation, 1-1 Toyoshu, Koto-ku, Tokyo 135-8719, Japan

*4Department of Electronic Control and Robot Engineering, Aichi University of Technology, 50-2 Manori, Nishihazama-cho, Gamagori-shi, Aichi 443-0047, Japan

Received:
October 4, 2011
Accepted:
August 27, 2012
Published:
December 20, 2012
Keywords:
lunar exploration, small, lightweight rovers, elastic wheel
Abstract

Rovers are one of the most important vehicles used for conducting planetary exploration missions. This paper focuses on a small, lightweight rover that can be used for lunar exploration. It should be noted that, with a small rover, it is difficult to traverse loose soil such as that on the lunar surface. The rocks that cover the lunar surface, moreover, hinder the traversal of a small, lightweight rover. We develop a small, lightweight rover having 2 configurations to solve these tasks. One configuration involves the installation of elastic wheels whose 2 form changes depending on the surface that the rover traverses. The other configuration involves passive suspension using differential gears. We perform running experiments on rovers with these configurations. Experimental results prove that elastic wheels are more efficient than rigid wheels for traversing loose soil. We also found, moreover, that the proposed rover shows good climbing performance. We thus have shown the efficiency of the proposed small, lightweight rover in this study.

Cite this article as:
Kojiro Iizuka, Tatsuya Sasaki, Hidenori Hama,
Atsuro Nishitani, Takeshi Kubota, and Ichiro Nakatani, “Development of a Small, Lightweight Rover with Elastic Wheels for Lunar Exploration,” J. Robot. Mechatron., Vol.24, No.6, pp. 1031-1039, 2012.
Data files:
References
  1. [1] M. V. Winnendael, P. Baglioni, and J. Vago, “Development of the Esa Exomars Rover,„ Proc. of The 8th Int. Symposium on Artificial Intelligence, Robotics and Automation in Space (i-SAIRAS), Session 2a, 2005.
  2. [2] D. Bickler, “The New Family of JPL Planetary Surface Vehicles, in Missions, Technologies and Design of Planetary Mobile Vehicles,„ D. Moura (Ed.), pp. 301-306, Cepadues-Editions Publisher, Toulouse France, 1993.
  3. [3] M. Bekker, “Theory of Land Locomotion,„ The University of Michigan Press, 1955.
  4. [4] R. N. Yon, E. A. Fattah, N. Skidas, and M. Kitano, “Run dynamics of off-road vehicles,„ The Japanese Society for Study Technology Education, 1986.
  5. [5] J. Wong, “Theory of ground vehicles,„ Wiley-Interscience, 2001.
  6. [6] K. Yoshida, N. Mizuno, G. Ishigami, and A. Miwa, “Terramechanics-Based analysis for slope climbing capability of a lunar/planetary rover,” Proc. of 24th Int. Symposium on Space Technology and Science, 2004-k-06, 2004.
  7. [7] K. Iagnemma, S. Kang, H. Shibly, and S. Dubowsky, “Online Terrain Parameter Estimation for Wheeled Mobile Robots With Application to Planetary robots,„ IEEE Trans. on Robotics, Vol.20, No.5, pp. 921-927, 2004.
  8. [8] K. Iizuka, H. Kanamori, and T. Kubota, “A Study of Terramechanics for Movement on Planetary Surface,„ Robotics Symposia, Vol.10, pp. 33-38, 2005 (in Japanese).
  9. [9] G. Ishigami, K. Nagatani, and K. Yoshida, “Path Following Control with Slip Compensation on Loose Soil for Exploration Rover,„ Proc. of 2006 IEEE/RSJ Int. Conf. on Intelligent Robots and Systems, 2006.
  10. [10] R. A. Irani, R. J. Bauer, and A. Warkentin, “A dynamic terramechanic model for small lightweight vehicles with rigid wheels and grousers operating in sandy soil,„ J. of Terramechanics, Vol.48, Issue 4, pp. 307-318, 2011.
  11. [11] T. Muro, “Terramechanics – Running Dynamics –,„ Gihodo Press, 1993 (in Japanese).
  12. [12] T. Ono, H. Nakashima, H. Shimizu, J. Miyasaka, and K. Ohdoi, “FE-DEM analysis of tractive performance of an elastic wheel for planetary rover,„ Proc. of the Joint 9th Asia-Pacific ISTVS Conf. and Annual Meeting of Japanese Society for Terramechanics, No.082 (DVD-ROM), 2010.
  13. [13] S. Narita, M. Otuki, S. Wakabayashi, and S. Nishida, “Mobility Evaluation of Low-PressureWheel Lunar Exploration Rover,„ Proc. of the Joint 9th Asia-Pacific ISTVS Conf. and Annual Meeting of Japanese Society for Terramechanics, No.085 (DVD-ROM), 2010.
  14. [14] W. Petersen, C. P. Vyasarayani, and J. McPhee, “Flexible Planetary Rover Tire Model with Volumetric Wheel/Soil Interface,„ Proc. of 17th Int. Conf. of the Int. Society for Terrain-Vehicle Systems, Paper No.235 (DVD-ROM), 2011.
  15. [15] N. Marzwell, W. E. Larson, M. Duke, and F. Schowengerdt, “PISCES: developing new design, materials and technologies for sustained,„ Earth and Science Conf., 08-3158, 2008.

*This site is desgined based on HTML5 and CSS3 for modern browsers, e.g. Chrome, Firefox, Safari, Edge, Opera.

Last updated on Mar. 05, 2021