The two developed at the Technical University of Vienna Space Robot Roby Space Junior I and II have passed its first test in space. The Sunday started by the Japanese Uchinoura Space Center rocket placed the two robots as planned. Their task was to get around on a strained inter-satellite network. “After what we know so far, the robot worked as planned. For further details you can say only after evaluating the data,” said project manager Peter Kopacek of Institute for Intelligent Handling and Robotics in the press-text interview.
“The background of this test project is a future vision for energy in outer space,” said Kopacek. “In 20 to 30 years are in orbit between satellites five times five km grids are stretched, on which there are solar panels. Robots, as developed by us, are then responsible to orient the panels toward the sun, to the highest possible to achieve energy efficiency. “The energy will then be forwarded to a microwave generator, which then transmits it wirelessly to Earth.
The international project team under Japanese leadership, attention by winning the world title in the robot soccer on the Austrian team of engineers. “Came after is successful performance of our soccer robot in Korea most of the ESA in 2004 up to us. For the mission, we should build a test robot. We could take 70 percent of the hardware and software of our soccer robots, so we finally two robots at the flight test have been used, “said Kopacek.
The parabolic flight was now carried out the test the robot. The rocket launched at an angle of 80 degrees. At 50 km altitude, after about 40 seconds of flight, was blown off the wrapper of the rocket head and extended the network by the three daughter satellites. After the network had stabilized in 80 kilometers altitude, the two robots were sent out. Now they had to re-move about 200 seconds to around the net as much as possible.
“Roby II was from a camera mounted on the mother satellite, was filmed. He crawled over the net easily, thus the requirements of the ESA have been satisfied,” said Kopacek. The fate of the second robot is still not known. “We have to wait until the analysis of telemetry data. It will take until the end of February.” Kopacek, however, was very confident, and expects to follow-up projects. “It’s great that could prove a small development team in Austria in this way internationally,” said Kopacek press text finally over.