Engineering Services (ESI) has received CAD$3 million worth contract from the Canadian Space Agency to build archetypes of control stations, investigation tools and a robotic arm. Later these robotic technologies will be included in the land-based archetypes of Martian and lunar rovers.
This agreement also features an option of an additional robotic arm of value $500 000. This funding is a portion of the 2009 Economic Action Plan of the Government of Canada and it focuses on enhancing the creation of new robotic technologies for space study.
Steve MacLean, President of the Canadian Space Agency has stated that the archetypes to be developed under this agreement will uphold Canada’s reputation as a potential partner in lunar and mars exploration missions.
It was reported that ESI will develop an innovative light-weight robotic arm that can extend extensively. The arm can be controlled either automatically or manually from a safe distance and will be incorporated with exploration tools like powered socket wrench, grippers and scoopers for performing multifarious operations.
The robotic arm archetype is likely to be delivered in the beginning of 2012 and will be utilized to validate the entire operations of rovers and their payloads in real-time field experiments mimicking essential circumstances of space research. The outcomes of this research will also be deployed in enhancing robotic autonomy and improving the methods of robotic sensing in ambiguous environments.