. Moon News .

Mighty Eagle Improves Autonomous Landing Software With Successful Flight
by Staff Writers
Huntsville AL (SPX) Sep 25, 2013

Mighty Eagle descends to the landing field. Image Credit: NASA/MSFC/Fred Deaton.

The Mighty Eagle, a NASA robotic prototype lander managed out of NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala. successfully completed a test flight today as part of a series to help validate software from Moon Express, Inc. The flight also evaluated a new hazard avoidance system designed and developed at the Marshall Center.

Under the terms of a Reimbursable Space Act Agreement signed with Moon Express, the Marshall Center is providing its Mighty Eagle lander test vehicle and engineering team in support of a series of test flights to help validate the company's Guidance, Navigation and Control (GNC) flight software.

Guidance algorithms developed by Moon Express will be integrated into the existing software on-board the Mighty Eagle and used to perform the flight test series. This type of software is designed to tell the vehicle where to go and how to get there. In return, Moon Express is reimbursing NASA Marshall for the cost of providing the test vehicle and technical support.

"We are really excited about this flight series," said Jason Adam, flight manager for the Mighty Eagle.

"By utilizing both existing and new resources and expertise, we are not only gathering data about the innovative hazard avoidance system we designed, but at the same time we are helping Moon Express reach their goals and further their program.

"This is a great example of the types of partnership NASA is looking to strengthen in order to enable commercial companies to explore new places in our solar system."

NASA will use the Mighty Eagle and its larger counterpart, the Project Morpheus prototype lander, to mature the technology needed to develop a new generation of small, smart and versatile robotic landers capable of achieving scientific and exploration goals on the surface of planetary bodies.

"Our partnership with NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center is key to our goal of landing the world's first commercial spacecraft on the moon," said Moon Express co-founder and CEO Bob Richards.

"We have benefitted from NASA's encouragement and support in every step of our growth and development and we look forward to the results of our flight software tests on the Mighty Eagle."

The test series is also evaluating a new hazard avoidance system designed and developed by engineers at the Marshall Center. This avoidance hazard system will search for obstacles or hazards like rocks or boulders so that it can steer the vehicle away from those places. The flight series began August 30 and will run through October.

The Mighty Eagle prototype lander was developed by the Marshall Center and Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory in Laurel, Md., for NASA's Planetary Sciences Division, Headquarters Science Mission Directorate.

Key partners in this project include the Von Braun Center for Science and Innovation, which includes the Science Applications International Corporation, Dynetics Corp. and Teledyne Brown Engineering Inc., all of Huntsville.


Related Links
Moon Express
Mars News and Information at MarsDaily.com
Lunar Dreams and more

Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle

Memory Foam Mattress Review

Newsletters :: SpaceDaily Express :: SpaceWar Express :: TerraDaily Express :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News

Get Our Free Newsletters
Space - Defense - Environment - Energy - Solar - Nuclear


Mission to moon will boost research and awareness
Beijing (XNA) Sep 25, 2013
China could take advantage of its Chang'e-3 lunar exploration mission to boost international cooperation on space exploration and promote space education and awareness among the public, a leading expert from the United States said on Sunday. Speaking on the sidelines of a Galaxy Forum workshop held in Beijing, Steve Durst, founding director of the International Lunar Observatory Associatio ... read more

First scoop of Mars soil contains 2 percent water: study

NASA Rover Inspects Pebbly Rocks at Martian Waypoint

Martian Life: Good or Bad?

Communications Tests Go the Distance for MAVEN

Long-Stressed Europa Likely Off-Kilter at One Time

Massive storm pulls water and ammonia ices from Saturn's depths

Massive storm on Saturn throws water ice high in atmosphere

New Cassini data from Titan indicate a rigid, weathered ice shell

Pluto Science Conference Exceeds Expectations

SciTechTalk: Grab your erasers, there are more moons than we thought

NASA Hubble Finds New Neptune Moon

NASA finds new moon on Neptune

Mission to moon will boost research and awareness

Mighty Eagle Improves Autonomous Landing Software With Successful Flight

Watch Out for the Harvest Moon

Chang'e-3 lunar probe sent to launch site

Densest array of carbon nanotubes grown to date

Nanoscale neuronal activity measured for the first time

Container's material properties affect the viscosity of water at the nanoscale

Molecules pass through nanotubes at size-dependent speeds

XCOR And ULA Complete Critical Milestone In Liquid Hydrogen Engine Program

Boeing and Aerojet Rocketdyne Test CST-100 Thrusters

NEXT Provides Lasting Propulsion and High Speeds for Deep Space Missions

Wind Tunnel Testing Used to Ensure SLS Will 'Breeze' Through Liftoff

Chinese VP stresses peaceful use of space

China's space station to open for foreign peers

Last Days for Tiangong

China civilian technology satellites put into use

New space crew joins ISS on Olympic torch mission

Station Crew Readies for Cygnus' Sunday Arrival

American, two Russians take shortcut to space

Tech glitch delays space station berthing to Saturday

The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2012 - Space Media Network. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement