Undergraduate Student Instrument Project

Spring 2014

Student
Edward Nolan
Advisor
Donald Thomas
Project description

My research this semester relates to the design and development of a system capable of creating high-precision, 3D models of lunar skylights and craters during low altitude flyovers. Specifically, my work this semester will entail the design, fabrication, and testing of avionics for this flight system. This will require programming a Linux development board, the BeagleBone Black, to manage and collect data from several sensors. These include a LIDAR remote sensing laser, an Inertial Measurement Unit, and several cameras. The development board will also control a motor/encoder loop to control the orientation of the LIDAR. All data collected will be sent to a dedicated flight computer over Gigabit Ethernet. The research will also involve the development of a separate power board to provide a switched DC power supply for each individual sensor. The project is supported by a NASA Undergraduate Student Instrument grant, and a SURG grant (Skylight Survey Avionics).

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