HOMEBUSH, NSW (Abyss PR) — Australian and Houston-based AI and robotics leader Abyss Solutions has just received a Demonstrator Feasibility grant under the federal government and Australian Space Agency’s Moon to Mars Initiative. The company that builds AI solutions to drive autonomous robotics applications for the offshore oil and gas industries will now apply those next-gen technologies to Mars and space.
Abyss received the grant to conduct feasibility testing and transform their space borne robotic inspection and intervention project into a next-gen technology that can be used in future NASA missions to the Moon and beyond.
Grants are part of a $150 million program announced last year to help local SMEs join the US government’s public-private Moon to Mars space exploration program.
Abyss Solutions uses advanced robotics, intelligent algorithms, data analytics, and machine learning to revolutionise critical infrastructure management for the oil and gas, water, transport, maritime and defence industries.
Abyss is set to develop a preliminary design and prototype robotic sensor and intervention manipulator to undertake asset inspection and repairs for spaceborne operations.
“The project aims to apply Abyss’ market-leading expertise in robotic inspection to the challenges of space to develop high value technology and services to the space industry,” said Dr Lashika Medagoda, Abyss Head of R&D. “The project will produce valuable commercial insights, with plans for a launched demonstrator mission to show sustained commercial application.”
“The Australian space sector’s rapid expansion is driven by the intersection of research and industry,” said Dr Xiaofeng Wu, University of Sydney’s lead researcher and space engineering expert. “Through highly technical projects such as this, Australia can prove its worth as a valuable contributor to the global space effort.”
Abyss CCO Masood Naqshbandi said Abyss was “thrilled to play a part in NASA’s grand ambition to establish a sustainable presence on the Moon for missions to Mars.”
“As ex-Sydney Uni, we’re also looking forward to collaborating with the School of Aerospace, Mechanical and Mechatronic Engineering and the Australian Centre for Field Robotics,” he continued.
“We’ve always thought our pioneering technologies and products for the energy, infrastructure and marine industries had a clear application in space,” he adds. “This is a brilliant opportunity to demonstrate it.”