Advanced Automation for Space Missions

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Advanced Automation for Space Missions is the final report of a study on the feasibility of using machine intelligence, including automation and robotics, in future space missions. The 10-week study was conducted at the University of Santa Clara in Santa Clara, California, from June 23-August 29, 1980 by 18 educators from universities throughout the United States who worked with 15 NASA program engineers. The specific study objectives were to identify and analyze several representative missions that would require extensive applications of machine intelligence, and then to identify technologies that must be developed to accomplish these types of missions.

This study was sponsored jointly by NASA, through the Office of Aeronautics and Space Technology and the Office of University Affairs, and by the American Society for Engineering Education as part of their continuing program of summer study faculty fellowships. Co-hosts for the study were the NASA Ames Research Center and the University of Santa Clara, where the study was carried out. Project co-directors were James E. Long of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory and Timothy J. Healy of the University of Santa Clara.

A major component of the study involved the use of automated self-replicating factories for lunar exploration and exploitation.


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