Duster

In a few words

HTR was involved in ESA’s project DUSTER for the development of a cleaning robot for the solar panels of exploratory equipment on the Martian surface. The cleaning medium should be compressed Martian atmosphere. Mars has a very thin atmosphere of just 7mbar. HTR has performed exhaustive test campaigns using equipment manufactured for the purpose.

 

An intermittent flow system that spends a long time slowly compressing the Martian CO2 atmospheric gas into an accumulator/container. From time to time, when the temperature conditions permit it, the system can operate some cleaning using the compressed CO2 gas. The compressed CO2 detents through the nozzle, providing the necessary air-flow and speed for the purpose.

 

Low Pressure Testing Chamber

Low Pressure Testing Chamber

Thorough design to detailed implementation

Thorough design to detailed implementation

HTR has developed a tailored pump able to compress the very thin Martian atmosphere and obtain enough pressure for solar panel cleaning. An ultra-light robot for the cleaning operation was designed as well.

 

 

 

 

Solar panel mock-ups have been integrated by HTR and used during the cleaning campaign.

 

 

 


Photo Gallery

 

Dust removal for various types of granules

Extendable robotic mechanism

Wind Tunner Testing