NASA: Lunar pits could one day shelter astronauts.
While the moon’s surface is battered by millions of craters, it also has over 200 holes – steep-walled pits that in some cases might lead to caves that future astronauts could explore and use for shelter, according to new observations from NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) spacecraft.
The pits range in size from about 5 meters (~5 yards) across to more than 900 meters (~984 yards) in diameter, and three of them were first identified using images from the Japanese Kaguya spacecraft. Hundreds more were found using a new computer algorithm that automatically scanned thousands of high-resolution images of the lunar surface from LRO’s Narrow Angle Camera (NAC).
"Pits would be useful in a support role for human activity on the lunar surface," said Robert Wagner of Arizona State University, Tempe, Arizona. "A habitat placed in a pit — ideally several dozen meters back under an overhang — would provide a very safe location for astronauts: no radiation, no micrometeorites, possibly very little dust, and no wild day-night temperature swings."
These robotic garden lamps are connected via a central wireless hub, which can also be accessed via iPad to monitor or change their behaviour.
These little garden ‘bots are meant to meander about your topiaries and flower pots, altering the overall aesthetic of your garden every time you lift your head. Even better, each of the Toro-bots has its own encoded “personality”. With a series of infrared rangefinders, the robots can sense their surroundings, even reacting to human visitors to their garden by stepping out of your way.
Using three paintball guns mounted on a 3D printed pan/tilt servo bracket, Waterloo Labs creation is able to shoot o ut 10 paintballs per second to create any shape entered by the user. Or the software can trace an outline of a person or shape standing in front of the camera and shoot around the edge.
Robugtix’s T8 spider robot is going up for sale soon for US$499. Not sure what you’d use it for except scaring co-workers though - and you’d be risking someone stomping on your new $500 bot - but here’s the pre-order page.
WildCat is a four-legged robot being developed to run fast on all types of terrain. So far WildCat has run at about 16 mph on flat terrain using bounding and galloping gaits. The video shows WildCat’s best performance so far. WildCat is being developed by Boston Dynamics with funding from DARPA’s M3 program.