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Comments on Robotic Lunar 'MoonDigger' Bulldozers Planned By NASA
Interesting proposal to make use of teleoperated MoonDiggers to prepare landing pads for upcoming missions to the lunar surface. (Read the complete story)

"Here is a cool video showing an 'astronaut' driving NASA's Lunar Chariot with special bulldozing attachments.

(Bill Christensen 3/3/2009 8:39:12 PM)

"Yes! A star-control reference! In Star-control 2 the players arrives at Earth finding it's population enslaved. An alien moonbase is supposed to be guarding Earth but the aliens left and to maintain the illusion that the base is still active, left a bunch of "Brainbox bulldozers" programmed to move dirt around at random. (BrainBox is a brand of educational electronics kits) Quote: "We decided that if the Earthlings figured out we had abandoned the base on Luna they would be more likely to try something sneaky. So we rigged up some old bio-droids to drive around on the lunar surface in bulldozers endlessly pushing around the same piles of dirt. In addition, we connected the base's radio transmitter to the audio portion of `Winky's Happy Night', my favorite Melnorme FunRom hoping that the Earthlings would think we were still there.""
(Yossi Preminger 3/4/2009 4:38:03 AM)
"Heh. Plenty of SF has used robotic/telepresence lunar bulldozers. Outpost had the Robodozers, (and several other robot construction vehicles) as did Outpost II."
(Ashley 3/4/2009 8:34:16 AM)
"Yossi, here's the (slightly enlarged) BrainBox Bulldozer from Star Control.

Star Control was released for the PC in 1990."
(Bill Christensen 3/4/2009 10:34:04 AM)

"Ashley, I can't find a screenshot for the Robodozers, part of the Outpost game released for the PC in 1994. Here's a quote from a game FAQ: 'As you run your first turns, keep using the robodozer to clear terrain around your Seed factory. Also place a robodigger at the end of one of the tubes at the Seed factory construction site so that it can start digging your first underground level. When the robodigger is finished digging, the robodigger on the map will be replaced with the top of an air shaft.'"
(Bill Christensen 3/4/2009 10:38:10 AM)
"Apparently, the idea of a remote-controlled bulldozer has been used in Israel in demolishing buildings in the West Bank and in the Gaza Strip. This controversial practice makes use of an armored D-9, an enormous device the size of a small house. If I'm not mistaken, this practice is back in the news today.

Also, Caterpillar has been working on the idea of autonomous robotic bulldozers that make use of GPS and more accurate tracking and navigation systems to more fully automate the construction sites of the future. See this article I did a while ago on the construction site of the future."
(Bill Christensen 3/4/2009 11:18:09 AM)

"There's a robodozer in this screenshot from outpost: Moonbase is another PC game from 1990, IIRC it features different vehicles which extract He3 and Oxygen from moondust."
(Yossi Preminger 3/4/2009 4:52:41 PM)
"I would like more details. What are these robots made from? How are they deployed? Can they double as science collection devices? What is their power source? I have to assume that they operated on rechargeable batteries, which are charged at some PV station, but even this is ot spelled out. They don't seem particularly optimized for weight or efficiency from what I can see of their design. A big rake could probably do a better job. Or perhaps something like a snow-impeller could chuck the dust in the right direction, and they could later drive over it to compact it. The basic need for a robot of this type has been established, but the design seems rather lacking. "
(aaronc 3/7/2009 8:14:37 AM)

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