Autonomous Target Recognition and Localization for Manipulator Sampling Tasks

Abstract :-
Future exploration missions will require autonomous robotic operations to minimize overhead on human operators. Autonomous manipulation in unknown environments requires target identification and tracking from initial discovery through grasp and stow sequences. Even with a supervisor in the loop, automating target identification and localization processes significantly lowers operator workload and data throughput requirements. This thesis introduces the Autonomous Vision Application for Target Acquisition and Ranging (AVATAR), a software system capable of recognizing appropriate targets and determining their locations for manipulator retrieval tasks.

AVATAR utilizes an RGB color filter to segment possible sampling or tracking targets, applies geometric-based matching constraints, and performs stereo triangulation to determine absolute 3-D target position. Neutral buoyancy and 1-G tests verify AVATAR capabilities over a diverse matrix of targets and visual environments as well as camera and manipulator configurations. AVATAR repeatably and reliably recognizes targets and provides real-time position data sufficiently accurate for autonomous sampling.

Author:- Naylor, Michael Pearson


Augmented Reality for Space Applications

Abstract :-
Future space exploration will inevitably require astronauts to have a higher degree of autonomy in decision-making and contingency identification and resolution. Space robotics will eventually become a major aspect of this new challenge, therefore the ability to access digital information will become crucial for mission success. In order to give suited astronauts the ability to operate robots and access all necessary information for nominal operations and contingencies, this thesis proposes the introduction of In-Field-Of-View Head Mounted Display Systems in current Extravehicular Activity Spacesuits. The system will be capable of feeding task specific information on request, and through Augmented Reality technology, recognize and overlay information on the real world for error checking and status purposes. The system will increase the astronaut’s overall situational awareness and nominal task accuracy, reducing execution time and human error risk. Continue reading

Application of Reduced Order Modeling Techniques to Problems in Heatconduction, Isoelectric Focusing and Differential Algebraic Equations

Abstract :-
This thesis focuses on applying and augmenting `Reduced Order Modeling’ (ROM) techniques to large scale problems. ROM refers to the set of mathematical techniques that are used to reduce the computational expense of conventional modeling techniques, like finite element and finite difference methods, while minimizing the loss of accuracy that typically accompanies such a reduction. The first problem that we address pertains to the prediction of the level of heat dissipation in electronic and MEMS devices. Continue reading

Architecture for the Autonomous Generation of Preference-Based Trajectories

Abstract :-
Numerous techniques exist to optimize aircraft and spacecraft trajectories over cost functions that include terms such as fuel, time, and separation from obstacles. Relative weighting factors can dramatically alter solution characteristics, and engineers often must manually adjust either cost weights or the trajectory itself to obtain desirable solutions. Further, when humans and robots work together, or when humans task robots, they may express their performance expectations in a “fuzzy” natural language fashion, Continue reading

Application of Compound Compressible Flow to Hypersonic Three-Dimensional Inlets

Abstract :-
A method for correcting flow non-uniformities and incorporating multiple oblique shocks waves into compound compressible flow is presented. This method has several applications and is specifically presented for the problem of creating a streamline-traced hypersonic three-dimensional inlet. This method uses compound compressible flow theory to solve for the freestream flow entering a pre-defined duct with a desired downstream profile. This method allows for multiple iterations of the design space and is computational inexpensive. Continue reading