Microgravity is a fascinating environment with many and varied applications over the realms of engineering and science. Unfortunately it is not easy to create microgravity on the surface of a planet like Earth. All attempts nowadays are expensive and time consuming. This project tries to show that low gravity can be reached at much lower costs than current approaches (such as parabolic flights or drop towers). However, this project is a feasibility study of the technique that can be used to create a low gravity environment. If this project can demonstrate that the selected approach is working, it can easily be up scaled for larger payloads or longer periods of low gravity.

The approach used in this project is to drop a payload off a high altitude balloon. During the drop the payload is still connected to the balloon’s gondola through a tether which is unreeled from an ordinary fishing spinning reel. The drop is decelerated using the internal brake of the fishing reel. As soon as the payload comes to a halt, it is reeled back up to the gondola and is ready for the next drop.


Latest Project: SMRT @SMURFS

Space Master Robotics Team @H.A.L.E. 2008
Milestone The full description of the mechanical subsystem is now online. This is also used for the upcoming Bexus presentation. For publishing the final results we still have to wait and hear back from the Austrian Space Applications Program, which said they would sponsor us but have not yet sent any information about that...
Posted by SMRT Jan 25
News We are busy working to finish the report and evaluate the date. But it seems like there was some problems with the reading of the measurements, unfortunately we do not have any data from it :(
Posted by SMRT October 15
Milestone The HALE balloon(s) flew today, the launch can be relived here and some pictures are here! A big THANK YOU to the whole HALE team and Steven Canvin at LEGO for giving us the opportunity. We are awaiting the data and more pictures ∧ information...
Posted by SMRT July 29
Milestone The xgravler project shipped REEL-E today to Reno, NV for the launch next week! The launch manual can be found here.
Posted by SMRT July 23
News We are busy working for managing to finish the payload on time. The launch date has been set to be July 29.
Posted by SMRT July 15
Wanted Sponsors are wanted for our H.A.L.E. project! If you are interested contact us!
Posted by SMRT May 20
Milestone Project Proposal sent to University of Nevada, Reno
Posted by SMRT May 19
News Invitation to participate in H.A.L.E. 2008
Invited by LEGO May 5
Space Master Robotics Team — General News
Milestone New Website Launched! (Still in beta!)
Posted by Juxi Leitner May 18
SpaceMaster Robotics Team

SpaceMaster Robotics Team Members

SpaceMaster Robotics Team

A student team consisting of members formerly studying in the Joint European Master in Space Science & Technology (SpaceMaster) programme. It is currently spread all over Europe.

Juxi Leitner

...is currently a Young Graduate Trainee at ESA's Advanced Concepts Team. He graduated from the Helsinki University of Technology and the Luleå Unversity of Technology in Space Robotics in 2009. He has been at the ISSL at the University of Tokyo, as well as at the VisLab at the Instituto Superior Técnico Lisbon for research stays. He received a BSc from the Technical University of Vienna in 2007. ...more

David Leal Martínez

...is a graduate student currently at the Helsinki University of Technology where he is writing his MSc thesis on "Reconfigurable Robots". He got his Bachelor degree in Electronic Systems Engineering from ITESM in Monterrey, Mexico. ...more

More Members

Mark 'Fitts' Fittock was a graduate student at Lulea tekniska universitat where he was heavily involved in student projects. He has a BSc in Astrophysics and Mathematics and a BEng with Honours in Mechanical Engineering from Monash University. He now works for the German Aerospace Center (DLR) in Bremen. ...more

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