ASTRA: Archimedes Screw for Targeted Regolith Aggregation
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© 2018, American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics Inc, AIAA. All rights reserved. The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is currently developing the capabilities needed to send humans beyond Low Earth Orbit (LEO), with the eventual goal of a human journey to Mars by the 2030s. In 2025, NASA plans to conduct exploration of deep space through the Asteroid Redirect Mission (ARM) in which astronauts will use the Space Launch System (SLS) and Orion capsule to explore an asteroid that has previously been moved into Lunar orbit by a robotic precursor mission. NASA scientists are particularly interested in obtaining a surface sample from the asteroid. Maximization of productivity during this mission depends on the existence of efficient, ergonomically designed, human-operated devices for sample collection. With this goal in mind, NASA established the Micro-g Neutral Buoyancy Experiment Design Teams challenge (Micro-g NExT). The Cornell University Micro-g team competed in this challenge to design a surface sampler. This paper details the design, prototyping, fabrication, and validation processes for a tool designed by a team of Cornell University students to collect a surface sample, as well as qualitative feedback from NASA divers in the Neutral Buoyancy Lab (NBL) for future prototypes. Additionally, this paper delineates the team’s commitment to the future generation of space explorers through outreach activities in the local community.
author list (cited authors)
Klapper, H. M., Jagatia, B., & Diaz Artiles, A.