Astronaut Robot Mission Simulator

Astronaut Robot Mission Simulator (ARMS)

The Motivational research group is developing an Astronaut Robot Mission Simulator (ARMS) for planetary exploration and education in collaboration with ASU’s School of Earth and Space Exploration, NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, MIT, and other industry partners.

ASU’s Decision Theater, a room with 260-degree, rear-projected capabilities for advanced visualization, has been developed into a virtual lunar environment for experiments designing and iterating optimal strategies for scientific data acquisition. The goal is to not only inform best practices for human-robotic extra vehicular activities (EVAs), but to explore the design process itself and inform and advance efforts by NASA, academic scientists, engineers and educators.

ARMS is advancing Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) education and outreach linked to national educational standards, including planetary terrain mapping and “pet-building/owning” activities. 

We collaborate with ASU’s School of Earth and Space Exploration (SESE) Mars Education Program (MEP), the Center for Research in Science, Math, Engineering and Technology (CRESMET), to conduct workshops with teachers, students, women, and underrepresented minorities, in an effort to make many of the experiences publicly available online.

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[Left Image] Co-located participants in ASU’s Decision Theaterinteracting with ARMS’s virtual Apollo 15 lunar landing site.


[Right Image] ARMS: Advancing Transformative Transdisciplinary Education on Vimeo. Winslow Burleson and Kip Hodges, Founding Director of the School of Earth and Space Exploration discuss "Strategies for Transformative Transdisciplinary Education."

In the News

Tech News Arizona. Gibbons, Christia, "'Win' in Science Can Propel Kids into Global Future." Oct. 20, 2009


Related Information and Links

Motivational Environments is partnering with National Geographic's  Remote Imaging Lab to advance the next generation of Crittercam  technologies.  This collaboration foster citizen science through  open-source cyberlearning platforms that engage students and  experts, alike, in world class discovery and exploration. Visit NGS Critercams.

SESE PhD Program
The  PhD in Exploration Systems Design offers students an advanced systems  approach for developing  scientific exploration technologies in a wide range of demanding  environments on the Earth, planets, moons, and space. This  transdisciplinary degree program provides a unique platform to train  systems engineers targeting technological development for exploration  science. This degree is offered in collaboration with the Fulton  Schools of Engineering (FSE). 
Contact if you are interested in applying. 


Grant Information

NASA Triad: A Triangulated Program to Promote NASA STEM Education Nationwide (9/10-9/12) $1,154,064.

JPL: Award 1311294: Electronics and Instrumentation for Extreme Environment Systems (7/07-7/08) $20,000.