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Regolith Excavation Performance of a Screw-propelled Vehicle
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  • Marko Green,
  • Teresa McBryan,
  • Darwin Mick,
  • David Nelson,
  • Hamid Marvi
Marko Green

Corresponding Author:[email protected]

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Teresa McBryan
Darwin Mick
David Nelson
Hamid Marvi
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Excavation of regolith is the enabling process for many of the in-situ resource utilization (ISRU) efforts that are being considered to aid in the human exploration of the moon and Mars. Most proposed planetary excavation systems are integrated with a wheeled vehicle, but none yet have used a screw-propelled vehicle which can significantly enhance the excavation performance. Therefore, CASPER, a novel screw-propelled excavation rover is developed and analyzed to determine its effectiveness as a planetary excavator. The excavation rate, power, velocity, cost of transport, and a new parameter, excavation transport rate, are analyzed for various configurations of the vehicle through mobility and excavation tests performed in silica sand. The optimal configuration yielded a 30 kg/hr excavation rate and 10.2 m/min traverse rate with an overall system mass of 3.4 kg and power draw of less than 30 W. These results indicate that this architecture shows promise as a planetary excavation because it provides significant excavation capability with low mass and power requirements.
Corresponding author(s) Email:   [email protected]  
30 Jun 2021Submitted to AISY Interactive Papers
06 Aug 2021Published in AISY Interactive Papers
04 Oct 2021Published in Advanced Intelligent Systems on pages 2100125. 10.1002/aisy.202100125