Zero gravity space product testing
Gravity is critical for testing space equipment in a realistic environment. By using this revolutionary simulation tool, CarboSpaceTech aims to avoid gravity impact during testing. Reach the next level of zero gravity testing for space equipment with the ZeroG robotic arm.
CarboSpaceTech’s ZeroG uses different methods for compensating in the XY plane (horizontal) and Z axis (vertical). ZeroG’s basic principle for XY suspends the test object on a rope, making sure that this rope is as vertical as possible during the test. A sensor measures this rope angle and robot manipulator, driven by a “closed loop” control system. Thus ensuring minimal deviation from true vertical. Prior to testing, a calibration is done by suspending a mass that is not affected by external forces. Using this mass as plumb line ZeroG can automatically find true vertical for multiple points in the working area. In the Z-Axis (vertical) ZeroG ensures constant force by measuring the force in the rope and actively controlling the rope length using a high-speed winch. Therefore, ZeroG is able to eliminate the impact of gravity by keeping the force in the wire equal to the mass of the test object multiplied by G and minimizing the rope angle.
Key features of ZeroG robot
Multi-hinge solar array testing with ZeroG
Different payloads and satellite specifications demand a variety of solar array surfaces. A larger surface can only be achieved by the use of multi-hinge solar arrays that connect several solar panels. CarboSpaceTech’s current development utilizes a ZeroG robot with multiple, independent manipulators – one for each of the connected solar panels.
Solar array deployment mechanism for OneWeb
Zero gravity testing of controlled boom deployment is essential for the OneWeb Satellites mega constellation mission’s success. Our parent company, SpaceTech, is delivering key components for OneWeb satellites. CarboSpaceTech is responsible for the manufacture and testing of the CFRP booms for the OneWeb deployment mechanisms.
Customized zero gravity testing devices
At CarboSpaceTech, we pride ourselves in being quick to develop and deliver new systems tailored to our customer’s needs. We are always happy to discuss the requirements of your next level zero gravity testing device!
ZeroG testing of multi-hinge deployment mechanisms
The demand for of multi-deployment solar arrays for satellite power supply is steadily growing. Only with CarboSpaceTech’s zero gravity testing in a lab you can assure that these special mechanisms will function flawlessly later on in space. The new version of the ZeroG robot is able to test such multi-hinged arrays.
ZeroG robot technical information
- Resolution < 1‘‘ (0,0004°)
- Working area ± 1°
- Sampling rate up to 2 kHz
- Integrated CAN master
- 4 independent portals, each with 2 degrees of freedom. 3 x Elmo Gold Twitter for each portal: 2 x for traverse (x-axis), 1 x for sled (y-axis). All controllers are directly attached to the drives.
- Carbon fiber traverse
- Linear motors for both sides of the two portals. Both portals moving on same magnetic track.
- Friction wheel drive for y-axis
- Working load: 100 kg (only vertical load)
- Work space: 5400 mm x 2800 mm
- Maximum speed-up: 2 g
- Maximum speed: 2 m/s
- Band width of control cycle speed: 60Hz
- Collision avoidance between traverses with CAN-Bus
- High speed transition of raw data by Wifi
- Control cycle 600 Hz (currently regulated by CAN-Bus)