Development and provision of a highly mobile and robust rover and walking robot for the integration into a multi-robot exploration team.
The goal of the VaMEx initiative is the development of an autonomous, heterogeneous robot swarm for the exploration of the Valles Marineris on Mars. Driving, walking, and flying systems will use their advantages to cooperatively explore a large area with different environmental characteristics.
The VaMEx-RGE (Valles Marineris Explorer - Robust Ground Exploration) project aims to further develop ground-based mobile units and their navigation technologies. In particular, aspects of multi-robot localization, mapping and navigation, cooperative decision making, exploration, and mission planning will be considered, and advanced robotic platforms and sensor systems will be explored.
For safe navigation in unstructured terrain, an increase of the robustness of the walking robot CREX and the exploration rover ARTEMIS on different levels is aimed at. For this purpose, hardware adaptations will be made and the low-level control and locomotion control of the systems will be optimized. Furthermore, both mechanical and electrical interfaces will be provided in order to integrate additional sensor modalities. The robot-specific provision of motion estimation and mapping will also be made available for the integration into the swarm, as well as the possibility of specifying waypoints for the systems, which are then safely traversed.