Modelling of Tethered Space-Web Structures

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D. J. McKenzie; M. P. Cartnell (2008), JBIS, 61, 24-31

Refcode: 2008.61.24
Keywords: Space-webs, momentum exchange tethers, crawler robots, spider-bots

Large structures in space are an essential milestone in the path of many projects, from solar power collectors to space stations. In space, as on Earth, these large projects may be split up into more manageable sections, dividing the task into multiple replicable parts. Specially constructed spider robots could assemble these structures piece by piece over a membrane or space- web, giving a method for building a structure while on orbit. The modelling and applications of these space-webs are discussed, along with the derivation of the equations of motion of the structure. The presentation of some preliminary results from the solution of these equations will show that space-webs can take a variety of different forms, and give some guidelines for configuring the space-web system.

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