Modeling Space Suit Mobility: Applications to Design and Operations
Computer simulation of extravehicular activity (EVA) is increasingly being used in planning and training for EVA. A space suit model is an important, but often overlooked, component of an EVA simulation. Because of the inherent difficulties in collecting angle and torque data for space suit joints in realistic conditions, little data exists on the torques that a space suit’s wearer must provide in order to move in the space suit. A joint angle and torque database was compiled on the Extravehicular Maneuvering Unit (EMU), with a novel measurement technique that used both human test subjects and an instrumented robot. Using data collected in the experiment, a hysteresis modeling technique was used to predict EMU joint torques from joint angular positions. The hysteresis model was then applied to EVA operations by mapping out the reach and work envelopes for the EMU.