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Title: D.R.O.P: The Durable Reconnaissance and Observation Platform
Authors: McKenzie, Clifford
Keywords: Durable Reconnaissance and Observation Platform (DROP)
lightweight robot
vertical climb
Issue Date: Aug-2011
Publisher: Pasadena, CA : Jet Propulsion Laboratory, National Aeronautics and Space Administration, 2011.
Citation: JPL Summer Space Grant and Summer Internship Program (SIP), Pasadena, California, August 2011
Abstract: Robots can provide a remote presence in areas that are either inaccessible or too dangerous for humans. However, robots are often limited by their ability to adapt to the terrain or resist environmental factors. The Durable Reconnaissance and Observation Platform (DROP) is a lightweight robot that addresses these challenges with the capability to survive falls from significant heights, carry a useable payload, and traverse a variety of surfaces, including climbing vertical surfaces like wood, stone, and concrete. DROP is manufactured using a combination of rapid prototyping and shape deposition manufacturing. It uses microspine technology to create a new wheel-like design for vertical climbing. To date, DROP has successfully engaged several vertical surfaces, hanging statically without assistance, and traversed horizontal surfaces at approximately 30 cm/s. Unassisted vertical climbing is capable on surfaces up to 85⁰ at a rate of approximately 25cm*s-1. DROP can also survive falls from up to 3 meters and has the ability to be thrown off of and onto rooftops. Future efforts will focus on improving the microspine wheels, selecting more resilient materials, customizing the controls, and performing more rigorous and quantifiable testing.
Appears in Collections:JPL TRS 1992+

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