Beagle 2 Simulation and Calibration for Ground Segment Operations

Dave Barnes, Nigel Phillips, Gerhard Paar

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review

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Beagle2 [1] as part of the ESA Mars Express mission [2] will be launched in May 2003. The primary science goal of Beagle2 is to search for the presence of life on the planet with the aid of a sophisticated package of scientific instruments [3]. These include mass, M ̈ossbauer and X-ray spectrometers, a microscope, stereo camera system (SCS), and environment sensors. All but the mass spec-
trometer (Gas Analysis Package - GAP) are mounted on a structure called the PAW, which also carries a mole device (PLUTO) to obtain sub-surface, and/or under rock samples, and a corer/grinder to remove weather rind from rock surfaces. Deployment of the PAW is achieved using a robot ARM that has been designed and built by Astrium Ltd [4, 5]. The operation of the ARM with its
PAW ‘end- effector’ is therefore of paramount importance during the mission, and considerable effort has been expended to validate its performance, and to provide ARM software tools that can be used during mission operations. The work has involved the creation of a virtual Beagle2 software simulation, kinematics calibration, and subsequent PAW SCS calibration, and Beagle2 environment DEM generation. This paper provides details our work in these areas, together with the results that we have obtained when using our calibrated Beagle2 simulation to generate ARM joint angle data which have then been used to command the real Beagle2 ARM
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2003
Event7th International Symposium on Artificial Intelligence, Robotics and Automation in Space - Nara, Japan
Duration: 19 May 200323 May 2003


Conference7th International Symposium on Artificial Intelligence, Robotics and Automation in Space
Period19 May 200323 May 2003


  • Beagle2
  • calibration
  • kinematics
  • simulation
  • DEM generation


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