Liverpool scientists to develop space robots with NASA

July 19, 2005

Scientists from the Research Institute for Advanced Computer Science (RIACS) at NASA and the University of Liverpool are working together to develop robotic systems used in space that will reduce the need for human space travel.

Scientists from RIACS and computer specialists from the University of Liverpool are investigating ways of improving technology in order to reduce the reliance on humans for space travel and develop the potential for robotic space missions.

University scientists are developing technology that will enable robots to ‘think’ autonomously, so that they might conduct entire space missions without human supervision.

Professor Michael Fisher, Director of the University’s Verification Laboratory, explained: “Autonomy is a major cost driver for space exploration since human missions require large earth-based teams for support. There are also significant risks posed to humans sent into space.

“We are currently studying new forms of software that aim to improve the accuracy of decisions made by space robots so that missions can be completed with greater success. We are also analysing software that will enable robots to work alongside humans in space.”

The RIACS scientists will meet with computer specialists at the University of Liverpool this week to discuss the possibilities for joint human and robot deep space missions and investigate the potential of new software to enable such missions.

Autonomous software components used in space are difficult to verify or control due to the diverse environments that they encounter in the cosmos. It is considered essential by space experts to attempt verification of autonomous software before deployment, as these systems are among the most complex and error prone to develop.

Source: University of Liverpool

Explore further: NASA orders additional astronaut taxi flights from Boeing and SpaceX to the ISS

Related Stories

Full go-ahead for building ExoMars 2020

December 19, 2016

The first ExoMars mission arrived at the Red Planet in October and now the second mission has been confirmed to complete its construction for a 2020 launch.

US, Russian, Japanese astronauts return from ISS

October 30, 2016

Three astronauts landed safely in Kazakhstan on Sunday following a 115-day mission aboard the the International Space Station, including US astronaut Kate Rubins, the first person to sequence DNA in space.

Recommended for you

Theory lends transparency to how glass breaks

January 16, 2017

Over time, when a metallic glass is put under stress, its atoms will shift, slide and ultimately form bands that leave the material more prone to breaking. Rice University scientists have developed new computational methods ...

Graphene photodetector enhanced by fractal golden 'snowflake'

January 16, 2017

(Phys.org)—Researchers have found that a snowflake-like fractal design, in which the same pattern repeats at smaller and smaller scales, can increase graphene's inherently low optical absorption. The results lead to graphene ...

Ants need work-life balance, research suggests

January 16, 2017

As humans, we constantly strive for a good work-life balance. New findings by researchers at Missouri University of Science and Technology suggest that ants, long perceived as the workaholics of the insect world, do the same.

A novel way to put flame retardant in a lithium ion battery

January 16, 2017

(Phys.org)—A team of researchers at Stanford University has found a novel way to introduce flame retardant into a lithium ion battery to prevent fires from occurring. In their paper published in the journal Science Advances, ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.