• The robot will help "develop low-cost and high-speed manufacturing processes for making large composite rocket structures," according to Preston Jones, who is a deputy director at Nasa's Marshall Space Flight Center.
  • Composite rocket structures might be a good fit for space vehicles that could carry humans on missions to Mars, according to Jones. In fact, that's its first project -- experimenting with parts for a heavy-lift rocket for deep space missions. Composite materials are being used because payload is a major consideration on long trips.
  • The robot travels up and down a 40 foot long track. Its head is at the end of a 21-foot arm and it's armed with 16 spools of composite fiber tape that it lays down much like a 3D printer. The robot was manufactured by Washington-based company Electroimpact.




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