Meet the First Spider-Like Robot to Explore Lava Caves on the Moon

by Moin Uddin Ahmed Tipu

Hidden beneath the moon’s layers of dusty regolith are lava caves— caves that scientists hope could one day support human colonies. But these subterranean spaces have never been explored before….at least not yet.
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Asagumo is the latest rover from Spacebit, a space robotics company based in the United Kingdom. Its set to launch onboard the UK’s first mission to the moon AND will be the first rover ever sent to explore the lunar lava tubes. We’ve used massive wheeled ‘bots as our means of exploration for years. So why is it time to move into a design with legs? Scientists believe that legs would provide Asagumo a possibility to travel through rough terrain. They also believe that legs would allow Asagumo, for example, to climb on the rocks and so on. Lava caves will present a much more rugged landscape than that of the lunar exterior.

A lava tube is just a long cave made by lava a long time ago. On Earth we can find lava tubes as well. Scientists hope that lava tubes could be used as a really nice place for a sustainable human lunar base. This lava cave should protect from temperature, from radiation, from small meteorites, and other potential things that can harm humans. Because no one has had a chance to explore these lava tubes yet, there are still many unknowns. But we *think* they’re there because of the steep pits or “skylights” we’ve spotted on the moon’s surface.

Asagumo will be tasked with identifying whether any of these suspected caves could be a suitable future home for humans. But as Asagumo prepares to take one giant step for robotkind, you may be wondering: how will its design help meet this ambitious goal? The main goal is to walk for 10 meters. And during that walk, we will gather… a lot of data. We really hope that Asagumo will be able to walk for half a kilometer but even 10 meters will be more than enough. But there are so many variables when tackling a design that involves so many moving parts. (Literally).

#science #seeker #tech #space #lavacaves #Asagumo

Read More:

Meet Asagumo, a spider-like rover that is going to the moon later this year

“Called Asagumo rover, it is built on a single-unit CubeSat frame that is generally used for small satellites. The rover weighs just 1.3kg and runs on solar power. Instead of wheels or tracks, the rover features four arachnid-like legs.”

Space Talks with Pavlo Tanasyuk, CEO of Spacebit launching UK’s first lunar rover

“Although weight-saving for lunar vehicles has been fundamental in the design process since Apollo—for launch vehicle payload and cost reasons—modern micro-miniaturization technologies have allowed the development of a rover that weighs little more than that legendary yardstick, the ‘bag of sugar’.”

Lava tubes may be havens for ancient alien life and future human explorers

“Besides providing a window into geological history, lava tubes offer environmental conditions that are relatively stable and likely to be more hospitable than those found on a planet’s surface. This may make the tubes appealing to life-forms of all sizes, from microbes to spacefaring colonists from Earth.”

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32 comments

Scott Davis December 31, 2021 - 6:29 PM

Meanwhile Elon musk plans to have humans on Mars in the next 10 years ….

Din Djarin January 1, 2022 - 2:38 AM

full moving motor is great and fast, but consume more energy. I think it's the best way to keep 2 mode for the moving system. the full moving motor is great to use when outside the cave where the sun energized the solar cells.

Payton J January 1, 2022 - 9:07 PM

In 5 or 10 year it's on the moon lmfao!!! If Musk launches one rocket with the boring company drill this doesn't matter. He can do that in literally half the time of this project.

Ariel Popperl January 1, 2022 - 11:20 PM

That ginger is cringe…

Wanda Labuschagne January 1, 2022 - 11:22 PM

Crap…..they are dreaming

Waking Up with Emma January 1, 2022 - 11:44 PM

Why don't you use this robot and go inside hollow earth

g w January 2, 2022 - 3:32 AM

Zzzzz….

Melia Noonan January 2, 2022 - 4:05 AM

Great… just another thing us humans can destroy.. oh sorry… I mean explore.

MegaShadow January 2, 2022 - 6:02 AM

I like how they look like bacteriophages

kaxitaksi January 2, 2022 - 7:36 AM

Imagine coming back to the moon later and find out they have self replicated and there was millions of them. 😱😜😅

jodders January 2, 2022 - 11:38 AM

Imagine volunteering to live in space and they you realise Bezos or Musk is running the show. I'll stay on Earth ta very much.

Leah Manogin January 2, 2022 - 12:38 PM

Cool Tech buutttt….Is anyone else creeped out by the legs????👀

Chantal Dixon January 2, 2022 - 12:57 PM

Spiderbot In the Verse

adam dupavillon January 2, 2022 - 1:14 PM

Moon people please

Elizabeth Gary January 2, 2022 - 1:35 PM

I urge everyone to use Dr Alaho Olu herbal supplements on YouTube because he cured my HSV 2 and HPV. He cures multiple Fibroids too..

Chuck Hall January 2, 2022 - 4:21 PM

I know what I'm asking santa for Christmas next year.

Mark Ramirez January 2, 2022 - 6:33 PM

I’ve seen this, hmm don’t look up? Hehehe

Teemo FPV January 2, 2022 - 8:34 PM

3:33 How to make a robot that walks on the moon? StackOverflow and vscode

Taylor Seashore January 2, 2022 - 9:15 PM

Imagine if the rover discovers something ELSE already living in these tunnels.

MrOvimik January 3, 2022 - 1:14 AM

Anyone else thinking about the replicators from stargate? :D

Fuck Youtube January 3, 2022 - 2:37 AM

I don't believe lava is in the moon. Why the cgi?

nezb01 January 3, 2022 - 3:32 AM

I love the English accent.

Aser Elshawi January 3, 2022 - 5:24 AM

Is this the kind of robot they came up with after all this time?! It sounds more like April fools a bit earlier!

Luke Skywalker January 3, 2022 - 7:59 AM

We all know what they are really doing!

This is where they will keep all the unvaccinated. I heard it gets cold 🥶 up there so bring a jacket. And I'm sure we will get fined for not wearing a mask 😷 under our space helmets! I mean why not it makes just as much sense as 2021 and 2022.

JUANZERO January 3, 2022 - 3:11 PM

I'd love to see if these "lava" tube are uniform or not and I think we should pack the bot with a drone or two

Mavis Chadwick January 3, 2022 - 6:28 PM

All thanks to Dr Alaho Olu on YouTube who finally cured me from Herpes Simplex Virus type 1&2 and HPV…

Patrick January 5, 2022 - 2:26 AM

Outfitted with a "wi-fi link" for all that moon wi-fi….

The Kwiatek January 5, 2022 - 3:31 AM

Just send SPOT from Boston Dynamics there with science equipement attached. 20 years of developent for free

Ferey Fazil January 5, 2022 - 12:28 PM

thanks for giving a most amazing information about near future.

K. Kawahira January 5, 2022 - 4:30 PM

So.. It's actually not just a game changer but Asagumo is also a gait changer!

Mister Rice January 5, 2022 - 7:02 PM

I have so much to say about this robot design, but I’m just gonna rate it instead. It’s a 3/10 cause I think it might possibly be a troll.

THANOS January 6, 2022 - 8:17 AM

Why aren't they working with boston dynamics