NASA Tournament Labs, a project within their Center of Excellence for Collaborative Innovation (CoECI), will be working together with Freelancer.com on tools to help space exploration efforts. Over the coming weeks, Freelancer.com will be supporting the NASA CoECI in using its crowdsourcing platform, Freelancer Contests, to help provide a number of CAD models for tools to be used by the Robonaut 2 (R2) on the International Space Station.
R2, the first humanoid robot in space, is intended to be an astronaut assistant, and as such, will be manipulating many tools and interfaces. The Robonaut team uses a special supervisory control interface that brings the robot data and model together with tool models in an environment to help with planning. The CAD models that will be developed on Freelancer will be used in this supervisory control interface, and will be representative of tools that R2 may use on the ground or on orbit, such as RFID Scanners, Drills, and Scopemeters.
CoECI’s NASA Tournament Lab (NTL) usually runs much larger and more complex challenges via the NASA Open Innovation Services (NOIS) contracts. To start, NTL will prototype some smaller products and services using Freelancer.com. While these challenges will be smaller in scope than normal CoECI/NTL challenges, these contests will reach very large communities -- Freelancer.com has almost 16 million registered members in over 247 countries, regions, and territories. NASA is also interested in engaging these public communities going forward in helping to contribute to the efforts of Space Exploration.
Freelancer.com’s CEO Matt Barrie says, "We are honored to welcome NASA to the 16m strong user Freelancer.com community. NASA Tournament Lab working with Freelancer.com clearly shows that crowdsourcing solutions has become an essential part of creativity and innovation and that there is a strong demand to develop ingenious and world-leading solutions online. We look forward to collaborating with NASA to help them with space exploration going forward, and seeing the tool designs our freelancers produce for Robonaut 2."
Interested in helping NASA out? Check here for NASA’s micro-task challenges in the coming weeks!