HDPR: A Mobile Testbed for Current and Future Rover Technologies
Hewitt, Robert A.
Marshall, Joshua A.
HDPR , Mobile Testbed
The paper in hand presents a mobile testbed –namely the Heavy Duty Planetary Rover (HDPR)– that was designed and constructed at the Automation and Robotics Laboratories (ARL) of the European Space Agency to fulfill the lab’s internal needs in the context of long range rover exploration as well as in order to provide the means to perform in situ testing of novel algorithms. We designed a rover that: a) is able to reliably perform long range routes, and b) carries an abundant of sensors (both current rover technology and futuristic ones). The testbed includes all the additional hardware and software (i.e. ground control station, UAV, networking, mobile power) to allow the prompt deployment on the field. The reader can find in the paper the description of the system as well as a report on our experiences during our first experiments with the testbed.