A Mobile Robot Testbed for Prognostics-Enabled Autonomous Decision Making
The ability to utilize prognostic system health information in operational decision making, especially when fused with information about future operational, environmental, and mission requirements, is becoming desirable for both manned and unmanned aerospace vehicles. A vehicle capable of evaluating its own health state and making (or assisting the crew in making) decisions with respect to its system health evolution over time will be able to go further and accomplish more mission objectives than a vehicle fully dependent on human control. This paper describes the development of a hardware testbed for integration and testing of prognostics-enabled decision-making technologies. Although the testbed is based on a planetary rover platform (K11), the algorithms being developed on it are expected to be applicable to a variety of aerospace vehicle types, from unmanned aerial vehicles and deep space probes to manned aircraft and spacecraft. A variety of injectable fault modes is being investigated for electrical, mechanical, and power subsystems of the testbed. A software simulator of the K11 has been developed, for both nominal and off-nominal operating modes, which allows prototyping and validation of algorithms prior to their deployment on hardware. The simulator can also aid in the decision-making process. The testbed is designed to have interfaces that allow reasoning software to be integrated and tested quickly, making it possible to evaluate and compare algorithms of various types and from different sources. Currently, algorithms developed (or being developed) at NASA Ames - a diagnostic system, a prognostic system, a decision-making module, a planner, and an executive - are being used to complete the software architecture and validate design of the testbed.
How to Cite
prognostics, testbed, decision making, autonomy
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