In NASA’s pioneering efforts to continually push the frontier of space exploration, they’ve turned to the robotics and automation industries for help more than once. But now NASA is returning the favor — a software program called HyperSizer, developed by Collier Research Corp., assisted them in the construction of their new Composite Crew Module (CCM), and they’re releasing the software for use by US industries.
by Peter Alpern
The design and construction of NASA’s Composite Crew Module was optimized with the help of HyperSizer structural sizing and design analysis software.
HyperSizer is a structural sizing and design optimization software tool that works in a feedback loop with finite element analysis (FEA) to automatically search for solutions that minimize weight and maximize manufacturability. Although it can also be used on metallic structures, HyperSizer is particularly applicable to complex composite materials, providing the capability to optimize the architecture of large structures such as aircraft, railcars, or wind turbine blades ply-by-ply and element-by-element.
NASA’s CCM is an all-composite alternative for the flight crew module Orion, which is part of NASA’s Constellation program to return man to the moon or go to Mars. The recent tests were considered a milestone in the design of human-rated spacecraft that points toward increased use of lightweight composites in space vehicles.
Read the full article from IndustryWeek here. How could use of this software influence the way engineers design robots and other automation technology?