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TALARIS Takes Flight

TALARIS Talaris is a student project at MIT's Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics, aiming to produce a small-scale prototype vehicle similar to the Apollo Program's Lunar Landing Training Vehicle (LLTV) -- that is, a vehicle that can recreate lunar gravity by using downward-pointing fans to counter 5/6 of the vehicle's weight. A secondary propulsion system (in our case, a compressed gas propulsion system) can then maneuver the vehicle as if it is operating in lunar gravity. This allows direct testing of guidance, navigation and control algorithms for automated robotic lunar landers. The end goal of this work is to feed forward into the design of a Google Lunar X-Prize vehicle being produced by Next Giant Leap.



The TALARIS vehicle will be demonstrated on June 11th at the MIT "Giant Leaps" symposium. Additional videos can be found here: http://techtv.mit.edu/collections/talaris
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