Panasonic Industry supports development of robot for exploring asteroids

24th June 2024
Paige West

Panasonic Industry Europe is actively supporting a project led by students from ETH Zurich aimed at creating a robot capable of asteroid exploration.

The primary obstacle for the SpaceHopper initiative is the minimal gravity on asteroids, complicating robotic movement. The ETH Zurich team has concluded that controlled jumps would be the most efficient mode of travel in this low-gravity setting, prompting them to design a robot with three legs.

Panasonic Industry's contribution to the SpaceHopper programme involves providing guidance and essential support in selecting and supplying the most suitable batteries for testing the robot in low-gravity environments, such as parabolic flights. Currently, they have chosen a battery pack consisting of twelve robust and temperature-resistant BK-300SCP Ni-MH cells. According to Jorit Geurts from SpaceHopper, these batteries are "the optimal solution for the zero-g flights due to their robustness and their large temperature ratings."

With the assistance of the ESA Academy, the SpaceHopper robot has been tested under microgravity conditions. On Earth, simulating such conditions is feasible but expensive, typically achieved through parabolic flights where a specially designed aircraft follows a parabolic trajectory to create short periods of weightlessness.

Comments Carl-Frederik Riemenschneider, Head of Business Development at Panasonic: “Our company is happy to support this project because it fits in perfectly with our vision: Energy that changes the future.

“We are very much looking forward to seeing the results of the current tests and to see how this SpaceHopper project will move forward.”

For more information about Panasonic Industry’s support for the SpaceHopper programme from ETH Zurich please click here.

Featured products

Upcoming Events

View all events
Latest global electronics news
© Copyright 2024 Electronic Specifier