Follow this link to skip to the main content
JPL - Home Page JPL - Earth JPL - Solar System JPL - Stars & Galaxies JPL - Science & Technology
  NASA Logo
Jet Propulsion Laboratory
California Institute of Technology
BRING THE UNIVERSE TO YOU: 
JPL Toolbar
Search JPL
Technology Selection & Risk Assessment
START Home Red Block
Middle Red Block
Case Studies
white line
About Us
white line
Methodology
white line
Case Studies
white line
 Overview
white line
 NASA agency-level studies:
     START Lite
     Technology Development
     Assessing Future Missions
     Integrated Resource Allocation
white line
 Science (SMD)
     Carbon Uncertainty
     JPL Chief Technologist Analysis
     New Millennium Program

     Enabling Mars Missions:
       - Biosignature Detection
       - Landing Site Selection
       - Selecting Technologies
       - Lander vs Rover
       - Autonomy
       - Hazard Avoidance
       - Predicting Technology Cost
       - Automated Design Tool

     Titan:
       - Science Traceability Matrix
       - Mission Architecture

     Europa

     Space Telescopes:
       - Tech Investment Tools
       - Earth Observatory at L2
white line
 Exploration (ESMD)

     Astronauts on Asteroid

     Asteroid surveyors

     Schrödinger Mission

     Shackleton-Malapert Mission

     Tech Prioritization for
Constellation


     Human-Robot Missions
       - Comparing Architectures

       - Task Scheduling
          - Allocating Tasks 1
          - Allocating Tasks 2

       - Lunar Mission Pilot
          - Human-Robot Polar Mission
          - Robotic Precursor Mission

       - Performance Improvements
       - System Architectures

     Autonomous Inspection
white line
 Aeronautics (ARMD)

     Capability Assessment
white line
white line
Publications & Proceedings
white line
News
white line
Sitemap
white line
Human-Robot Task Allocation Level 2 Banner

Human-Robot Missions

What are the relative advantages of humans, robots, and human-robot teams?

Robots have been extremely important in space exploration. Among other achievements, they have traveled to all the planets in the solar system (with one currently on its way to dwarf planet Pluto and another en route to the asteroid belt), roamed the surface of Mars, and brought samples of a comet and the solar wind to Earth. They will no doubt continue to demonstrate their value alongside humans in future missions to the Moon, Mars, and elsewhere. But to get the most value from human-robot teams in any given mission, it is necessary to analyze mission requirements in terms of human and robotic capabilities, and to assign and schedule tasks in the most productive manner.

There are several possible architectures for cooperative systems of humans and their robotic assistants. Human controllers on Earth could operate one or more robots that are stationed at an off-Earth site, as they currently do with the rovers on Mars. A human crew in the relative safety of a spaceborne module could control robots that are working in space or on a planetary surface. Humans and robots could team up in joint extravehicular-activity (EVA) operations. In this last option, robotic help would permit the crew to focus on tasks that only humans do well, such as correcting unforeseen anomalies and failures.

The ESMD's Directorate Integration Office has engaged the START team in a series of studies to develop an optimization system, featuring an automated planning tool, for NASA's upcoming human-robot missions on the Moon.

In a separate study, the START team projected the performance improvements that are likely to develop in robotic and human-enhancing technologies during the next decade or two, and analyzed their impact on a mission to assemble a large telescope in space. In another independent project, the START team conducted a study of system architectures for a hypothetical mission to the surface of Mars, comparing the effect on productivity of various combinations of humans working with robots.

For more information, contact: Charles.R.Weisbin@jpl.nasa.gov



  About | Methodology | Case Studies | Publications & Proceedings | News | Sitemap | Home

PRIVACY / COPYRIGHT IMAGE POLICY CONTACT INFORMATION CREDITS
  NASA Home Page   Primary START Contact: Charles R Weisbin
  Last Updated: January 24, 2013