The SPIDER manipulation system (SMS): The Italian approach to space automation

R. Mugnuolo, S. Di Pippo, P. G. Magnani, E. Re

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


SPIDER (space inspection device for extravehicular repairs) is the strategic long-term programme in the field of Space Automation and Robotics started by the Italian Space Agency. In the frame of the programme, a free-flying space robot with a high degree of autonomy, designed to perform inspection and repair tasks in the proximity of orbital structures will be developed. In particular, SPIDER has been conceived to be equipped with a bi-arm manipulation system. To support the SPIDER programme, ASI has started specific technology development activities. Among those, a technological programme has been started named "SPIDER manipulation system (SMS)". This programme consists of the development of a bi-arm manipulation system in three phases, with the first phase to develop a single arm and a simplified version of its controller and its operator interface, and then to get the complete bi-arm system at the end of the third phase. This paper describes the phase-1 results which will be referred to as SMS-I.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)79-88
Number of pages10
JournalRobotics and Autonomous Systems
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - Mar 1998


  • JERICO mission
  • Redundant robot arm control
  • Space station automation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Computer Science Applications
  • General Mathematics


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