There is an ever-growing demand for larger structures in space: Larger solar panels achieve greater power output, larger antennas achieve higher gain and resolution, and larger solar sails achieve faster propulsion. However, the state-of-the art approach for deploying such systems in space limits their size to tens of meters, due to issues with reliability, precision, and other challenges unique to the space environment. To overcome these challenges, we are developing a method for manufacturing large structures in space from raw feedstock. Our approach relies on deformation processing, solid-state joining, and electrostatic actuation to fabricate truss structures for various space applications. In this lecture Harsh Bhundiya will describe the proposed manufacturing process, our research progress, and our vision for manufacturing large structures in orbit.
*** Organizer will provide lunch. ***
MIT Room 33-218
125 Massachusetts Avenue