Articles written in Journal of Earth System Science
Volume 114 Issue 6 December 2005 pp 777-785
Unmanned mobile robots for surface exploration of the Moon or planets have been extensively studied and developed. A lunar rover is expected to travel safely in a wide area and explore in detail. Japanese lunar robotics exploration is under study to conduct an unmanned geological survey in the vicinity of central peaks of impact craters for investigation of the sub-surface materials. This will give us the key information to study the lunar inner structure and understand the Moon’s origin and evolution as well as to investigate the evolution of magma ocean and later igneous processes. To carry out the geological exploration in the central peak, lander and rover co-operative exploration is proposed. The working group has been conducting feasibility study of advance technologies. This paper addresses an overview of lunar exploration with lander and rover and also enumerates future technologies to be established.
The rover R&D group has developed an innovative science micro rover with a new mobility system and a lightweight manipulator. The design and implementation of a science rover for the near future lunar missions requiring long traverses and scientific observations are described and some experimental results are presented.