NASA, as part of its Tournament Lab, has partnered with Freelancer.com to tap into its 16 million users to help design CAD (computer aided design) models of tools to be used by the Robonaut 2 (R2) on the International Space Station.
Freelancer.com will help set up crowdsourcing contests for users to participate in solving complex problems astronauts face in space exploration and assist them by building tools for Robonaut 2 to carry out daily chores.
The Robonaut 2 - the first humanoid robot to enter out space - runs on a supervisory control interface, where the models of the tools will be used. The robot will use certain tools such as RFID scanners, drills, and scopemeters on the ground or in orbit.
“We are honoured to welcome NASA to the 16 million strong user Freelancer.com community,” said Freelancer CEO Matt Barrie.
“NASA Tournament Lab working with Freelancer.com clearly shows that crowdsourcing solutions has become an essential part of creativity and innovation and that there is a strong demand to develop ingenious and world-leading solutions online.
“We look forward to collaborating with NASA on the cutting edge of space exploration, and seeing the CAD designs our freelancers produce for Robonaut 2.”
NASA is interested in using crowdsourcing sites like Freelancer.com in future to help it develop tools and technologies for other space exploration tasks. It is examining the costs and benefits.