This is not a NASA Website. You might learn something. It's YOUR space agency. Get involved. Take it back. Make it work - for YOU.

JPL Rolls Out Robosimian While JSC Hides Valkyrie

By Keith Cowing
NASA Watch
January 14, 2014
Filed under , , , , ,

JPL’s RoboSimian
“Miami Speedway in Homestead, Fla., was the place to be late last month for an unusual two-day competition: the DARPA Robotics Challenge Trials. But if you went expecting high-octane cars zooming around the track at blazing speed, you might have been disappointed. The 16 robots participating in the challenge moved more like the tortoise than the hare, as they performed such tasks as opening doors or climbing a ladder; tasks aimed to speed the development of robots that could one day perform a number of critical, real-world, emergency-response tasks at natural and human-made disaster sites.”
Keith’s note: This article about Robosimian appears on JPL’s home page. Other than an exclusive opportunity given to IEEE Spectrum magazine several months ago, NASA JSC has not released anything officially to document how Valkyrie robot tied for last place (Robosimian placed 5th) in DARPA’s competition. No mention as been made by NASA JSC as to whether work will continue on this robot, how much more will be spent, if there will be addtional attempts to compete, etc. Nor has anyone explained by the Valkyrie team needed a fancy racing car trailer complete with a Cadillac-themed golf cart stuffed inside.
NASA JSC’s Valkyrie Robot Tied For Last Place in DARPA Competition, earlier post
NASA JSC Has Developed A Girl Robot in Secret (Revised With NASA Responses), earlier post
NASA JSC’s Expensive Custom Trailer For Val the Robot, earlier post

NASA Watch founder, Explorers Club Fellow, ex-NASA, Away Teams, Journalist, Space & Astrobiology, Lapsed climber.

5 responses to “JPL Rolls Out Robosimian While JSC Hides Valkyrie”

  1. Riley 1066 says:

    The boundary line between “succeeding” and “failing” in this Robotics Challenge was VERY hard to discern from watching the robots “in action”.

    • Rocky J says:

      Maybe Valkyrie needed to take from the Tonya Harding playbook and billy club the other robot competitors. I don’t think it would have had the same effect though. Atlas is pretty tough and none cry like Nancy or even like Arnold.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Good to see some coverage of the Robosimian robot, but half of the title and most of the note is about JSC Valkyrie. There was a lot of Q&A in the Valkyrie posting and it would be great to see some of that out of JPL too.

  3. hikingmike says:

    They had some technical difficulties and Valkyrie’s performance was a disappointment. I’m sure they’ll do better if there is a next time. I guess they need to make a Twitter account so it doesn’t look like they’re hiding it.

  4. dogstar29 says:

    I’d like to see more on Robosimian, it looks like a capable design. Why not actually exchange information on robotics between the NASA centers, as though they were all part of …..One NASA?