Castrol membership supports the AstroAnt Payload Program—a miniature robotic swarm designed to perform tasks on the surfaces of spacecraft, rovers, and landers.
AstroAnts constitute a miniature robotic swarm designed to perform inspections and diagnostic tasks on the external surfaces of spacecraft, rovers, and landers. Each robot features a modular design; the sensor payloads can be tailored based on different inspection missions, and the data collected from the robots can be used to monitor operations in space. Working with Lunar Outpost, the AstroAnt robot will be sent to the Moon for a technology demonstration test.
Through this research collaboration, Castrol will work closely with the MIT Media Lab’s Space Exploration Initiative and Responsive Environments research group to test space-grade lubricants to withstand the extreme environment of the lunar surface enabling the AstroAnt robot’s motors to function as it collects thermal data and measurements of the Lunar Outpost MAPP Rover.