Mimicking the adaptability of living biological cells, robot modules will reconfigure themselves toward a common purpose within the limits imposed by the local environment.
We discuss a robotic module called a Molecule. Molecules can be the basis for building self-reconfiguring robots. They support multiple modalities of locomotion and manipulation. We describe the design, functionality, and control of the Molecule. We show how a set of Molecules can aggregate as active three-dimensional structures that can move and change… (More)
We discuss a robotic system composed of Crystalline modules. Crystaline modules can aggregate together to form distributed robot systems. Crystalline modules can move relative to each other by expanding and contracting. This actuation mechanism permits automated shape metamorphosis. We describe the crystalline module concept and show the basic motions that… (More)
The Science Activity Planner (SAP) is the primary science operations tool for the Mars Exploration Rover mission and NASA’s Software of the Year for 2004. SAP utilizes a variety of visualization and planning capabilities to enable the mission operations team to direct the activities of the Spirit and Opportunity rovers. This paper outlines some of the… (More)
1 Motivation Many large terrestrial structures—towers, bridges, construction scaffolds—are sparse assemblies of rigid bars connected together at structural nodes. This is also true of many in-space structures such as antennae, solar panel supports, and space-station members. A long-term application of truss climbing robots is automated assembly, repair, and… (More)
We have developed a new operator interface system for high-DoF articulated robots based on the idea of allowing the operator to extend the robot's actual kinematics with virtual articulations. These virtual links and joints can model both primary task DoF and constraints on whole-robot coordinated motion. Unlike other methods, our approach can be applied to… (More)
The recently reported KinectFusion algorithm uses the Kinect and GPU algorithms to simultaneously track the camera and build a dense scene reconstruction in real time. However, it is locked to a fixed volume in space and can not map surfaces that lie outside that volume. We present moving volume KinectFusion with additional algorithms to automatically… (More)
We discuss a physical implementation of the Crystalline robot system. Crystalline robots consist of modules that can aggregate together to form distributed robot systems. Crystalline modules are actuated by expanding and contracting each unit. This actua-tion mechanism permits automated shape metamorphosis. We describe the Crystalline module concept and a… (More)