[ISDC2006] Another Idea for ISDC - NASA Announces Telerobotic Construction Competition

pcojanis pcojanis at ureach.com
Tue Dec 13 11:30:48 EST 2005

Hello Everyone,

I have included an Article for the NASA Telerobotic Construction
Competition.(See below)  Why I think this is relevant is because
Ivor is working with another group doing Robotic competitions,
and I know that we could somehow establish a link with the two
and have at something at ISDC.

The Idea is to get NASA and the Spaceward Foundation to have
some type of formal event at our conference regarding the
Competition and to maybe also get Ivor's group to participate. 
Not in an actual robotic competion event at the conference (too
ambitious and to little time), but have some level of a
presentation from NASA about the program, maybe an exhibit and
demonstration, or even a workshop if they are interested.  

Does everyone think this is something worth following up?  
How do you think we should proceed with this?
Ivor is this something you can take a deeper look into and it
could be beneficial to your other robotic project work?

Philip Cojanis
(310) 699-7906
pcojanis at ureach.com

Article Start
WASHINGTON--- NASA Announces Telerobotic Construction
12/2/2005 @ 9:07 AM   print this article - email to a friend -
join our eNewsletter  
NASA's Centennial Challenges program office, in collaboration
with the Spaceward Foundation, Mountain View, Calif., announced
the new Telerobotic Construction Challenge. The competition
awards $250,000 to teams to develop technologies enabling robots
to perform complex tasks with minimal human intervention. 
   "The Telerobotic Challenge may directly affect how
exploration is conducted on the moon," said NASA's Associate
Administrator for the Exploration Systems Mission Directorate,
Scott Horowitz. "If the Challenge can successfully demonstrate
the remote assembly of simple and complex structures, many
aspects of exploration in general will be affected for the
   This Challenge will be conducted in an arena containing
scattered structural building blocks. The task is to assemble
the structure using multiple robotic agents remotely controlled
by humans. The operators may only see and talk to the robots
through communications' equipment that simulates Earth-moon time
delays and restrictions. The robots must be smart enough to work
together with only intermittent human direction to be
   "The Telerobotic Construction Challenge is directly linked to
NASA's focus on lunar exploration," said Brant Sponberg, NASA's
Centennial Challenges program manager. "Spaceward has shown
their capability to conduct a successful prize competition, and
we look to them to help advance this new technology." 
   NASA's Centennial Challenges promotes technical innovation
through a novel program of prize competitions. It is designed to
tap the nation's ingenuity to make revolutionary advances to
support the Vision for Space Exploration and agency goals. The
Exploration Systems Mission Directorate manages the program. 
   "Spaceward is pleased to expand on our prior collaboration
with NASA to conduct this competition," said Spaceward
President, Metzada Shelef. "Because of the high degree of
student interest in robotics, it is a great fit with our mission
to advance space science and technology in educational
   The competition takes place over two years, the first in
August 2007. Competition rules will be finalized in early 2006.
For information about Centennial Challenges on the Web, visit: 
   For information about NASA and agency programs on the Web,

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