Sierra Space Press Release
Collaboration Will Lead to Robotic Autonomy Solutions that Significantly Improve the Ability to Support Low Earth Orbit, Lunar and Deep Space Missions
Boulder, Colo., March 29, 2022 — PickNik Robotics, a leader in robotics software and engineering services, today announced that it is collaborating with the team at Sierra Space, a leading commercial space company with 1,100 employees, more than 500 missions and over 30 years of space flight heritage. The collaboration will explore implementation of robotic autonomy and controllability for autonomous maintenance of space habitat environments.
The companies anticipate that the robotic autonomy solutions developed with this collaboration will significantly improve the ability to support low Earth orbit (LEO), lunar and deep space missions. PickNik Robotics’ expertise in robotic manipulation paired with Sierra Space’s LIFETM habitat (Large Integrated Flexible Environment) product lines will help enable extended mission durations that benefit from remote-controlled automation.
Sierra Space aims to build the future of space transportation and destinations to enable a vibrant, growing commercial space economy in LEO. The company is creating the foundational infrastructure to support this new ecosystem, led by LIFE and its Dream Chaser® spaceplane. LIFE is a modular, three-story commercial habitation and science platform with applications in LEO, Mars transport and lunar/Mars surface habitation. It will provide opportunities for multiple businesses, including manufacturing, pharmaceuticals, and other sectors, to optimize the zero gravity benefits of space.
PickNik Robotics will provide technical expertise to Sierra Space for further developing supervised autonomy solutions for robotic technologies on Space Stations, including requirements gathering, workspace analysis and hardware selection. The company will also support Sierra Space in developing concept simulations of robotic assets for use on Space Stations. In addition, PickNik will provide software engineering to implement Space ROS and MoveItTM Studio to support Sierra Space’s flight-hardened software needs.
“At Sierra Space, our mission is to build a platform in space to benefit life here on Earth. To fulfill that mission, we wanted to collaborate with a leading robotics company that has deep expertise working in complex environments. PickNik Robotics fits those criteria,” said Steve Lindsey, Chief Strategy Officer at Sierra Space and former astronaut who has flown five missions for NASA. “We anticipate that PickNik will make a strong and positive impact on our ambitious goals in space.”
“Sierra Space’s vision and progress toward creating a commercial platform for space manufacturing and other applications is really exciting, and we look forward to contributing to those meaningfully with our robotics expertise and software,” said Dr. Dave Coleman, CEO of PickNik Robotics. “We are honored to be working with them to support their robotics development.”
PickNik Robotics has a large team of world-class robotics experts that help companies of all sizes solve the complex software challenges that are ubiquitous in the fast-growing robotics industry. Using a powerful and open robotics software platform, it helps companies decrease risks, development time and costs associated with robotic applications.
About Sierra Space
Sierra Space (www.sierraspace.com) is a leading commercial space company with more than 30 years and 500 missions of space flight heritage looking to lead the new space economy and benefit life on Earth. Sierra Space is the developer of the Large Integrated Flexible Environment (LIFETM) habitat, a modular, three-story commercial habitation and science platform. Designed for the burgeoning LEO marketplace, the company is also rapidly advancing toward the expected early 2023 launch of the Dream Chaser® spaceplane, the world’s only winged commercial space vehicle. Dream Chaser is reusable and uniquely capable of a smooth,1.5 low-g re-entry for crew and cargo transportation with the ability to land on existing commercial airport runways. The Dream Chaser spaceplane and LIFE platform are central components of the Orbital Reef commercial space station and mixed-use business park, under development in joint partnership with Blue Origin.
About PickNik Robotics
PickNik Robotics helps companies address the technical, cost, and time challenges associated with the development of advanced robotic applications. Major robotics organizations, such as NASA, Google, Amazon, Samsung, and many others, have partnered with PickNik to develop robotic applications. PickNik also supports and collaborates with the worldwide open source robotics movement and is the lead developer of MoveIt. Founded in 2015, PickNik is based in Boulder, CO. More information at www.picknik.ai