Camera and Antenna Orientation
Pointing both the senor array and the communications antenna is critically important functions for a rover. The antenna needs to be placed at the highest point of the rover to ensure it is not obstructed by the lunar surface or the rover itself. Similarly, the pan tilt mechanism on the cameras needs to be elevated from the surface to minimize the blind spots near the rover which negatively affect navigation ability. The camera and the antenna also need to be on the same mast so that they do not obstruct each other’s view angles. The goal of the project is to develop the first iteration of the combined mechanism for the sensor array and the communications antenna. By the end of October, a stand in camera pointing mechanism will be ready for testing. Second, a space worthy mechanism will be developed. By December, a space worthy design capable of pointing both the sensor array and the communications antenna will be ready for detail review and prototyping. The attached short video gives an idea of the movement desired in the first prototype. The image shows the prototype mounted onto Red Rover for initial testing. Lastly, the image is of a detailed design of a prototype riser for the Polaris rover that will be built shortly.