Archive for the ‘Teleoperators’ Category

1971 – Space Tug (Concept) – MSFC/Boeing (American)

9902041 x640 1971   Space Tug (Concept)   MSFC/Boeing (American)

9902046 x640 1971   Space Tug (Concept)   MSFC/Boeing (American)

American space tug. Study 1971. The original Boeing Space Tug design of the early 1970's was sized to be flown either in a single shuttle mission or as a Saturn V payload. Optimum mass was found to be 20.6 metric tons regardless.

The Tug could be outfitted with a variety of kits to serve in many roles, including as a manned lunar lander. Aerobraking for recovery in low earth orbit was considered for further study, but the baseline used RL10 engines to brake into earth orbit for refurbishment and refueling at a space station. All further work was cancelled by NASA in 1972, but resurrected as the aerobraking Orbital Transfer Vehicle in the 1980's.

Space Tug Systems had to be compatible for both utilization as (1) upper stages and payload components for the Saturn V vehicle and its derivatives and (2) as upper stages and payload components for the Earth-to-Orbit Shuttle (EOS). Primary applications for the Space Tug/Saturn V Systems would be for transportation of large payloads to lunar orbit and interplanetary missions. The Space Tug systems would be utilized as payload components for the above missions when used in conjunction with the nuclear shuttle. The majority of the Space Tug missions would, however, be in conjunction with the EOS. The baseline EOS considered for selection of the compatible Space Tug inventory was one with a 4.57 m diameter by 18.29 m long cargo bay. The maximum capability of this baseline EOS was specified as 24,500 kg to a 28 deg 185 km circular earth orbit. Later EOS design criteria, however, established the EOS capability to the 185 km. 28-1/2 deg inclination orbit at 29,500 kg. This larger EOS would allow utilization of a larger Tug propulsion module. The study had shown that the desirability of a larger propulsion module was generally questionable unless the size could be increased to on the order of 40,900 kg. However, if the aerobraking mode was proven feasible, this larger EOS capability could allow either placement or retrieval of 4500 kg of payload to or from geosynchronous orbit with a single EOS launch.

Considering the overall mission requirements and the required compatibility of the Space Tug with the other elements of the Space Transportation System, an inventory of Space Tug elements was selected. This inventory could accomplish, when assembled into the proper configurations, the overall mission spectrum. The selected Tug inventory consisted of the following components:

  • Primary propulsion modules with a 18,000 kg propellant capacity (designed for earth orbit missions).
  • Expendable drop tanks with 18,000 kg propellant capacity.
  • Secondary propulsion modules with a 7,600 kg propellant capacity (designed for earth orbit missions).
  • Astrionics modules (designed for earth orbit missions).
  • All purpose crew modules (outfitted as required for the various missions).
  • Cargo modules which use the shell of the all-purpose crew module.
  • Doughnut cargo modules (to carry experiments for the manned lunar landing missions).
  • Kits as follows:

    • Payload retrieval and placement adapters
    • A manipulator arm kit.
    • Staging adapters and separation mechanisms.
    • Clustering adapters (to provide for clustering of propulsion modules).
    • Plug-in astrionics for specific mission requirements.
    • Insulation and micrometeoroid kits (for increasing the thermal and micrometeoroid protection of the primary propulsion modules for the extended time of lunar landing missions}.
    • Reaction Control System Booster Kit (to increase the reaction control system thrust for the lunar landing mode}.
    • A landing leg kit (for lunar landing).
    • Radar kit for lunar landing.
    • Auxiliary power supply kit (for lunar surface operations. )

Source: here.

ztug crew x640 1971   Space Tug (Concept)   MSFC/Boeing (American)

Diagram of the Boeing Space Tug Crew Module (CM). Credit: Boeing

Space Tug boeing 71 wade 1971   Space Tug (Concept)   MSFC/Boeing (American)

zstugmw mark wade 1971   Space Tug (Concept)   MSFC/Boeing (American)

Above 2 images by Mark Wade.


otv turtle 2 tug 1984 x448 1971   Space Tug (Concept)   MSFC/Boeing (American)

OTV Turtle 2
Space Tug. This illustration (from 1984) depicts a manned space tug [Ed:using the 1971 Boeing design] returning to a space station from geostationary or lunar orbit. The vehicle passes through the Earth's atmosphere to slow down; its aeroshell is heated to thousands of degrees by kinetic friction. The small cylinder is the crew module. You can see the manipulator arms mounted on top.
Credit: NASA

fig31 x640 1971   Space Tug (Concept)   MSFC/Boeing (American)

See a similar 1970 Space Tug concept here.


See other early Space Teleoperators here.

See other early Lunar and Space Robots here.


 

1970 – Space Tug (Concept) – MSFC/Boeing (American)

space tug crew module MSFC 1970 x640 1970   Space Tug (Concept)   MSFC/Boeing (American)

Re-useable Space Tug Concept Report dated 1970

Manipulator Kit only for manned space tug.

The initial operational capability (IOC) date for the unmanned earth-orbit tug was Jan 1980,
the manned earth-orbit tug for December 1980 (includes Manipulator Kit), and the manned lunar tug for April 1983.

9902023 x640 1970   Space Tug (Concept)   MSFC/Boeing (American)

The Space Tug is modular in design.

9902058 x640 1970   Space Tug (Concept)   MSFC/Boeing (American)

Space Tug – Earth Orbit Applications Managed by Marshall Space Flight Center, the Space Tug concept was intended to be a reusable multipurpose space vehicle designed to transport payloads to different orbital inclinations. Utilizing mission-specific combinations of its three primary modules (crew, propulsion, and cargo) and a variety of supplementary kits, the Space Tug was capable of numerous space applications. This 1970 artist's concept represents a typical configuration required to conduct operations and tasks in Earth orbit. The Space Tug program was cancelled and did not become a reality.

9902061 x640 1970   Space Tug (Concept)   MSFC/Boeing (American)

NASA9902057 x640 1970   Space Tug (Concept)   MSFC/Boeing (American)

orbital transfer vehicle NASA9902059 x640 1970   Space Tug (Concept)   MSFC/Boeing (American)

Space tug missions x640 1970   Space Tug (Concept)   MSFC/Boeing (American)

Above images sourced from here.

Note: It has been suggested by others that the artists concept here (above) is of a Boeing design. I have not seen actual proof of that as yet.

MSFC is Marshall Space Flight Center.

space tug 1970 x640 1970   Space Tug (Concept)   MSFC/Boeing (American)

spaceTug3 x640 1970   Space Tug (Concept)   MSFC/Boeing (American)


See other early Space Teleoperators here.

See other early Lunar and Space Robots here.


 

1972-5 – Rancho Anthropomorphic Manipulator (RAM) – Rancho Los Amigos Hospital (American)

RAM MSFC 75 x640 1972 5   Rancho Anthropomorphic Manipulator (RAM)   Rancho Los Amigos Hospital (American)

The Rancho Anthropomorphic Manipulator (RAM) was built to test manipulator arms for use aboard the Space Shuttle.

RAM 72 illus x640 1972 5   Rancho Anthropomorphic Manipulator (RAM)   Rancho Los Amigos Hospital (American)

RAM 72 fig1 x640 1972 5   Rancho Anthropomorphic Manipulator (RAM)   Rancho Los Amigos Hospital (American)

Orthotic manipulator arms. A man in space is relatively helpless in many respects; to perform useful work, he has to have special tools and some kind of assisting control mechanisms. The Atomic Energy Commission (AEC) has long been interested in perfecting remote manipulators for safely handling radioactive materials from a distance by human operators. These interests coincided with some of NASA's interests, and both groups recognized the significance of advances in externally powered arm braces that had occurred at Rancho. The combined efforts of all three organizations have advanced the sophistication of remote manipulators and of externally powered orthotic manipulators.
Orthotic manipulators resemble the human arm in construction and operation. In medical applications they restore arm function to paralyzed patients, while industrial, scientific, and space uses emphasize "teleoperator" characteristics in a master/slave mode that duplicate human motions at a distance.
NASA and AEC sought Rancho Los Amigos Hospital assistance in improving teleoperators largely because of the hospital staff's success in developing a powered orthosis, the Rancho Electric Arm (REA). Beginning in 1959 with pneumatic (compressed air) power sources,
Rancho investigators determined that a functionally useful arm must have at least seven joints, or degrees of freedom, and they specified optimum alignments, locations, power requirements, angular velocities, and functional ranges of motion. In addition, they ascertained the characteristics and potential of control sites in various types of patients. Intensive analyses of normal arm motions enabled the team to specify operational mechanical configurations to approach as nearly as possible a duplication of normal arm function (see Figure 1 above).

RAM 72 fig2a x640 1972 5   Rancho Anthropomorphic Manipulator (RAM)   Rancho Los Amigos Hospital (American)

RAM 72 fig2b x640 1972 5   Rancho Anthropomorphic Manipulator (RAM)   Rancho Los Amigos Hospital (American)

After four years of work with pneumatic power, it was decided that an earlier consensus in the profession, -that electrical power was inferior to pneumatic power (National Research Council, 1961)–was no longer valid enough to preclude new explorations in electric power and control systems. The advantages of pneumatic systems were recognized: weight and cost of actuators were less than for electrical actuators; less noise is generated in the pneumatic system; and complex pneumatically powered orthoses were as much as 30 percent less costly than comparable electrically powered units. However, the advantages of electrical systems were more numerous and compelling. Among these are the greater ease and cheapness of replenishing the power source; greater efficiency of energy storage (by a factor of 10); no need to convert electronic control signals for pneumatic actuators; greater simplicity, versatility, and inexpensiveness of control signal processing units; availability of mass produced, low cost electronic components (versus individually produced costly pneumatic components); availability of a rotary output from an electrical actuator, which meets the need for rotary motion of the dynamic joints of an arm brace without a mechanical conversion of linear to rotary motion; and, very significantly, the ability to use a single energy system to provide ample power for both a wheelchair and an orthosis.
Development of the REA thus proceeded from the broad foundation of successful experience with pneumatically powered orthoses. By early 1965 an operational electric arm had been fitted to a patient for complete testing, evaluation and necessary modifications. Using the current version of the arm, this patient, who became a quadriplegic polio victim in 1954, is now able to perform many ordinary tasks of daily living, including writing, typing at 25 words per minute, and operating a modest telephone answering business.
Under contract to Marshall Space Flight Center, Rancho's orthotic arm expertise has been directed toward development and fabrication of four remote manipulators. A bilateral remote manipulator delivered to Marshall was based on earlier arm designs and incorporated several improvements. Among these were two redesigned joints in the master controller brace and lighter, stronger, and more efficient slave arms (see Figure 2).

RAM 72 fig3a x640 1972 5   Rancho Anthropomorphic Manipulator (RAM)   Rancho Los Amigos Hospital (American)

RAM 72 fig3b x640 1972 5   Rancho Anthropomorphic Manipulator (RAM)   Rancho Los Amigos Hospital (American)

RAM 72 fig4 x640 1972 5   Rancho Anthropomorphic Manipulator (RAM)   Rancho Los Amigos Hospital (American)

RAM 72 fig5a x640 1972 5   Rancho Anthropomorphic Manipulator (RAM)   Rancho Los Amigos Hospital (American)

RAM 72 fig5b x640 1972 5   Rancho Anthropomorphic Manipulator (RAM)   Rancho Los Amigos Hospital (American)

RAM 72 fig6 x640 1972 5   Rancho Anthropomorphic Manipulator (RAM)   Rancho Los Amigos Hospital (American)

RAM 72 fig7 x640 1972 5   Rancho Anthropomorphic Manipulator (RAM)   Rancho Los Amigos Hospital (American)

Finally, the Rancho Anthropomorphic Manipulator (RAM) exists as a demonstration prototype. RAM has the capability of operator-controlled terminal device replacement. It is mounted on a "shoulder" that allows side-to-side and forward-backward movement of four inches in each direction, as well as arm movement within the radius of the arms. Its size and power are much greater than those of the Rancho Electric Arm; RAM can lift and transport a ten-pound weight. Several control systems can be used, including a joystick. Development emphasis has been on a master/slave system with an exoskeleton control apparatus for the operator.
Beyond the immediately useful improvement of teleoperators that enable men to perform work in hostile environments, these research and development activities have enhanced Rancho's expertise in its area of major concern: rehabilitation of the disabled.

 1972 5   Rancho Anthropomorphic Manipulator (RAM)   Rancho Los Amigos Hospital (American)

The video system control and display panel used in testing the arm in 1975 at Mashall Space Flight Center.


The earlier Rancho Los Amigos Electric Arm (REA) was a leader in its time. Originally designed as a powered orthosis, copies were modified for Stanford Artificial Intelligence Laboratory's "Hand-Eye" robot in 1967, used in the 1977 movie "Demon Seed" for Joshua the robot, attachment arms to the 1972 Free Flyer, and for the 1969 Self-propelled Amthropomorphic Manipulator (SAM).


See other early Space Teleoperators here.

See other early Lunar and Space Robots here.


1988 – P.O.W.E.R. Arm – University of Alabama / Wyle Laboratories (American)

 1988   P.O.W.E.R. Arm   University of Alabama / Wyle Laboratories (American)

The Flexible Robot Arm P.O.W.E.R.
Introduction
The Personal Occupied Woven Envelope Robot (P.O.W.E.R.) project is a joint effort of the University of Alabama in Huntsville (UAH) and Wyle Laboratories. This work is being performed under the Innovative Research Program for NASA.
POWER is a flexible robot arm. It will be used as an "extension" of the Space Station. POWER consists of 50 segments, and each segment has six degrees of freedom. The segments are based on the Stewart Table, which has six linear (individually controlled) actuators. A control pod is attached to the top of the flexible robot arm. A flexible tunnel connects the control pod to the habitat module of the Space Station, allowing a person to transfer from the Space Station to the pod without having to suit up for extra vehicular activity. The operator of the pod is able to move himself and the pod to almost any location within 50 meters of the base attachment to the Space Station. The operator has at his disposal remote manipulator arms and also a glove box type arrangement with space suit arms so that he can perform manipulations on equipment external to the pod.
Some of the applications of POWER are:
•    Changing out and servicing payloads on the payload platform.
•    Maintaining subsystems such as propulsion and attitude control.
•    Providing satellite service.
•    Performing inspections.
•    Supporting shuttle cargo bay operations.
•    Performing remote control operations for hazardous duty.
•    Capturing satellites during final approach.

 1988   P.O.W.E.R. Arm   University of Alabama / Wyle Laboratories (American)

 1988   P.O.W.E.R. Arm   University of Alabama / Wyle Laboratories (American)

 1988   P.O.W.E.R. Arm   University of Alabama / Wyle Laboratories (American)

 1988   P.O.W.E.R. Arm   University of Alabama / Wyle Laboratories (American)

 1988   P.O.W.E.R. Arm   University of Alabama / Wyle Laboratories (American)

 1988   P.O.W.E.R. Arm   University of Alabama / Wyle Laboratories (American)

 1988   P.O.W.E.R. Arm   University of Alabama / Wyle Laboratories (American)


See other early Space Teleoperators here.

See other early Lunar and Space Robots here.


1972 – Free Flyer with Manipulator Arms – Bell / Rancho Los Amigos (American)

free flyer 12 M manipulator 72 x640 1972   Free Flyer with Manipulator Arms   Bell / Rancho Los Amigos (American)


Spacemen Get Long Reach with Remote-Control Aids
By WERNHER von BRAUN
PS Consulting editor, Space
Sophisticated puppets called "teleoperators" can relieve our astronauts of many difficult or dangerous tasks performed in orbit
When one of our coming Space Shuttles repairs a satellite in orbit, or retrieves it for return to Earth, it's likely the job will be done by remote control. Sometimes the actual operator may not men be one of the Shuttle crew, but a man down on the ground.
Little-realized by the public is how extensively the manned Shuttle will rely on unmanned devices and vehicles to perform its orbital tasks. The Shuttle's aids, including a novel crewless mini-spacecraft named the Free Flyer, will be among the most sophisticated of the remote-controlled machines we all "teleoperators"-and will be described here before we are through.
A teleoperator has been defined as "a general-purpose, dexterous, cybernetic machine." "Cybernetic," or capable of intelligently guided actions, distinguishes teleoperators from preprogramed automatons like phonograph record changers, or timer-controlled washing machines. It establishes that man himself is always "in the control loop."  
Teleoperators have found favor wherever man wants to perform a difficult task in an environment that is hostile-because of heat, pressure, radioactivity, a vacuum (requiring man to encapsulate himself in a clumsy space suit)- or sheer distance, as to other worlds that man can explore only by proxy at the present stage of space-flight technology.
What teleoperators can do. Some outstanding exploits of teleoperators to date offer examples of the key parts they can play in our conquest of space: When our unmanned Surveyor 3 spacecraft soft-landed on the moon in 1967, out went a toy-sized scoop on a lazy-tongs arm, radio-controlled from a pushbutton console on  Earth. By digging tiny trenches, it showed the consistency of lunar soil firm enough for astronauts to land and walk upon, before they arrived. A picturesque Soviet teleoperator, an unmanned eight-wheel roving vehicle called Lunokhod, was soft-landed on the moon in 1970 before our Apollo crews began bringing man-driven cars along. Operated from Earth by a crew of five, Lunokhod roamed the lunar surface for 10 1/2 months with TV eyes (PS, July '71). Twice the Russians have accomplished the extraordinary feat of gathering moon samples with a core drill on an unmanned soft-lander, and bringing them back to Earth. Luna 16 did it in 1970, and Luna 20 this year.  
Not all teleoperators call for remote control over such long range as the quarter-million-mile lunar distance of these examples-or the vast interplanetary distance to Mars, to operate our Viking lander that will seek signs of life on the Martian surface in 1976. Most teleoperators  are actually manipulators whose mechanical hands duplicate the motions of an operator's hands, at comparatively close range. More than 3000 manipulator arms have been built in the U.S. since 1948, most of them to handle radioactive objects safely in atomic laboratories. During a visit to the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, I had an opportunity to marvel at the dexterity of such a cable-operated manipulator system. Working with both hands, I learned within about 10 minutes to open a matchbox placed behind a thick glass window, remove a single wooden match, close the box again, and strike the match! These arms' mechanical control gives a remote sense of touch. Electric or radio control makes such a "force feedback" more complicated, but not impossible to provide. Beginning in 1961, manipulators to grasp submerged objects have been fitted to submarines and undersea robots. Adapting them for space has followed–and our Space Shuttle will be a showcase of their development.  

free flyer rescue 72 5a x640 1972   Free Flyer with Manipulator Arms   Bell / Rancho Los Amigos (American)
Remote-controlled gear for the Shuttle- To deploy and retrieve payloads, the Space Shuttle will have an attached manipulator consisting of ono to two giant mechanical arms-hinged booms up to 50 feet long, waved like "feelers," and equipped with television viewers. But the Shuttle's remarkable equipment with teleoperators does not end there.
A Free Flyer, expected to be carried aloft in the Shuttle's cavernous 15-by-60-foot cargo bay, will be a mobile teleoperator. Scooting through space under radio control from the Shuttle's cabin, it will dock itself to satellites rendezvoused by the Shuttle, and repair or recover them.  
As presently pictured, the unmanned box-shaped craft will measure only 48 by 36 by 32 inches and weigh about 400 pounds. Up to 16 hydrazine thrusters will propel it and govern its attitude.

free flyer rescue 72 4a x640 1972   Free Flyer with Manipulator Arms   Bell / Rancho Los Amigos (American)
At its business end the Free Flyer will mount any of a variety of interchangeable fittings—manipulator arms, and replacement modules of satellite parts, or a satellite-retrieving hitch for its "go-fetch-it" role.  

free flyer test 72 1 x568 1972   Free Flyer with Manipulator Arms   Bell / Rancho Los Amigos (American)
A TV camera peeping from its top, on the end of an extendable boom, and two others at strategic places, provide close-up control-console views of oper-ations too distant to observe from Shuttle windows. Its flights may be close-range ones, of 50 to several hundred feet, or may extend to a distance as for as several hundred miles.
For missions such as launching a synchronous satellite into the required 22,300-mile-high orbit, the Shuttle's orbiting altitude of some 175 miles will fall far short. So its cargo bay will carry a Space Tug—an unmanned, orbit-to-orbit rocket vehicle-to take high-flying satellites the rest of the way. The Free Flyer can ride the nose of the same Space Tug to high orbit, detach itself to fix or latch onto a satellite, and hitch a ride back down again.  During its operations in synchronous orbit the Free Flyer will be controlled from Earth, where a synchronous satellite hangs stationary overhead—rather than from the fast-orbiting Shuttle, whose line-of-sight control path to the Free Flyer would to obstructed by the Earth's bulk every 45 minutes or so.
Trials simulate flights. Pioneer "space flights" of an experimental Free Flyer took place on a 480-square-foot tabletop at Buffalo, N,Y., in trials for NASA concluded last February by Textron's Bell Aerospace Division.  

free flyer rescue 72 2 x640 1972   Free Flyer with Manipulator Arms   Bell / Rancho Los Amigos (American)
The weird mobile machine rode a three-cornered air-cushion platform that could glide without friction across the table's precision-smooth and flat surface of plastic-coated aluminum. Twelve nitrogen-gas thrusters propelled it in any direction or rocked it in its gimbal mounting. Its  equipment included NASA's latest in mechanical arms, called the Model 12-M General Purpose Anthropomorphic Manipulator.

free flyer rescue 72 3 x640 1972   Free Flyer with Manipulator Arms   Bell / Rancho Los Amigos (American)
Its "pilot" guided it with miniature joysticks on a control console where TV screen, linked to a camera on the moving machine, gave him his only view of its maneuverings. A simulated "satellite" at the table's end was its target.
In a series of trials, the experimenal Free Flyer succeeded in docking to the satellite, with a simple rodlike probe that latched within a guiding one. By remote control, it removed and replaced a satellite's thruster assembly, installed and extended a whip antenna, and replaced a battery. It proved a satellite could be refueled in orbit, by connecting and disconnecting a coupling for transferring fluids.  
It detected damaged solar-panel cells, fractured and eroded as if by meteoroid showers. It opened a port cover, poked a mirror inside, and inspected a valve and electric wiring.
Shuttle repair, caddying, rescue. An August 1972 report to NASA by Bell Aerospace sees many uses for the Free Flyer besides the repertory already cited- Among them:
• The mini-spacecraft could inspect the Shuttle's heat shield before re-entry–and carry a repair kit to apply a temporary patch of thermal shielding material if needed.
• While a Free Flyer can handle a satellite skillfully–and most safely, if it's tumbling over and over in orbit, studies now indicate- there may still be extravehicular tasks for spacewalkers. The Free Flyer could offer them caddy service" to carry cumbersome parts. If an astronaut forgot a tool, or needed a special one, he could send the Free Flyer back for it. An astronaut himself could hitch a ride to his work site, and back again, on the little spacecraft.

free flyer rescue 72 x640 1972   Free Flyer with Manipulator Arms   Bell / Rancho Los Amigos (American)
• Perhaps most dramatically, the Free Flyer could speed to the rescue of a "man overboard," adrift in orbit as pictured above. Well-padded "grappler" arms would gently enfold him and bear him to safety.
And there you have a preview of teleoperators we may see in space by the time, expected to be before 1980, when the Space Shuttle becomes operational.

Source: Popular Science, November 1972.


free flyer sim desc 72 x640 1972   Free Flyer with Manipulator Arms   Bell / Rancho Los Amigos (American)

Figure 1 shows the facility and the equipment used in the empiral program. It includes the Bell 5 DOF simulation facility consisting of the Precision Floor (1), and the Air Bearing Platform (2), a Remote Maneuvering unit (RMU) (3), and a Flight Control Console (4). The RMU is a self-contained laboratory satellite with all subsystems required to simulate space maneuvering with a high degree of fidelity. It is maneuvered from the Flight Control Console The task board (5), accepts six different work-piece inserts designed for the experiment program, and it provides a docking fixture representative of a passive spacecraft.
The NASA furnished equipment includes the 12-M general-purpose anthropomorphic manipulators, three controllers, and two closed-circuit TV systems. The 12-M manipulator shown in Figure 2 was installed on and integrated with the RMU. This manipulator was designed and fabricated by the Rancho Los Amigos Hospital, Inc., and consists of a right and left arm, each having seven degrees-of-freedom.

free flyer manipulator 72 x614 1972   Free Flyer with Manipulator Arms   Bell / Rancho Los Amigos (American)

free flyer console 72 x640 1972   Free Flyer with Manipulator Arms   Bell / Rancho Los Amigos (American)

free flyer controller 72 x640 1972   Free Flyer with Manipulator Arms   Bell / Rancho Los Amigos (American)

free flyer cover detail 72 x640 1972   Free Flyer with Manipulator Arms   Bell / Rancho Los Amigos (American)

The cover of the report clearly shows the Rancho Los Amigos manipulator arms.

 1972   Free Flyer with Manipulator Arms   Bell / Rancho Los Amigos (American)

free flyer manipulator 72 2 x618 1972   Free Flyer with Manipulator Arms   Bell / Rancho Los Amigos (American)

free flyer joy stick 72 x640 1972   Free Flyer with Manipulator Arms   Bell / Rancho Los Amigos (American)

free flyer witch controller 72 x640 1972   Free Flyer with Manipulator Arms   Bell / Rancho Los Amigos (American)


The Rancho Los Amigos Arm was a leader in its time. Originally designed as a powered orthosis, copies were modified for Stanford Artificial Intelligence Laboratory's "Hand-Eye" robot in 1967, used in the 1977 movie "Demon Seed" for Joshua the robot, and for the 1969 Self-propelled Amthropomorphic Manipulator (SAM).


See other early Space Teleoperators here.

See other early Lunar and Space Robots here.