Hypothesized Surface: Robotic Explorer – Michigan Tech
Nickel Class (2020 – 2021)
Alex Fuja, Computer Engineering
Ethan Fisher, Mechanical Engineering
Jared Wohlford, Mechanical Engineering
Matt Juzwiak, Mechanical Engineering
Rebecca (Becca) Held, Electrical Engineering
The NASA Psyche Mission is set to launch in 2022 and arrive at the asteroid in 2026. It is an orbiter mission and will not land on the surface. It is possible to imagine, however, that after learning about Psyche from orbit, there may be scientists and engineers interested in proposing a subsequent mission to actually land on the asteroid to explore its surface. The capstone team will design to the range of hypothesized surfaces that might be found at Psyche (and keeping in mind other constraints such as its gravity), design (and, if your capstone supports/allows, create a prototype of) a robotic explorer capable of efficiently traversing each of the hypothesized surfaces and, ideally, able to adapt to each of them mid-traverse. Hypothesized surfaces may include: mostly flat metallic surface, flat metallic with metal and/or rocky debris, rough/high-relief metallic and/or rocky terrain, high-relief metallic crater walls.