The BIRTH Lab
My current research focuses on how we can address mobility on granular media using experiments and simulations. I have screw propelled robots which I am testing and forming comparisons to simulation data. Screws are a good test subject because they are three dimensional intruders which create complex, three-dimensional shear and normal forces that may be hard to replicate by other means.
Awards from this research include:
ICRA 2018 Travel Award
GPSA Spring 2018 Travel Award
MSC Adams 2017 Simulating Reality Contest - University Runner-Up
NASA Internships: Kennedy Space Center and JPL
Looking to understand granular media and how robots interact with it, I applied and was selected as part of NASA's 2017 summer intern group. My assignment was in the Swampworks Lab, formally known as the Granular Mechanics and Regolith Operations (GMRO) Lab. It gave me physical interaction with fake lunar regolith (dirt) and is helping guide my design process for space vehicles.
In October 2018, I began working as an intern at the Jet Propulsion Lab. This position focused more on the terramechanics and experimental side of my work. The project aimed to develop sensor-embedded "smart" wheels. As the day-to-day operator, I got quite dirty!
If you have an interest in reading super dry academic publications, I've selected some to highlight below! Personally I think the work was fun but I do this for a living. Links included where possible.
- Thoesen, A., McBryan, T., Green, M., Martia, J., Mick, D., Marvi, H. (2019) Helical Granular Scaling Theory in Lunar Simulant. Manuscript submitted to Physical Review E
- Thoesen, A., McBryan, T., Mick, D., Green, M., Martia, J., & Marvi, H. (2020). "Comparative performance of granular scaling laws for lightweight grouser wheels in sand and lunar simulant." Powder Technology, Vol. 373, 336-346
- Thoesen, A., McBryan, T., Green, M., Martia, J., Mick, D., Marvi, H. (2019) "Revisiting Scaling Laws for Robotic Mobility in Granular Media." IEEE Robotics and Automation Letters 5.2 (2020): 1319-1325.
- Thoesen, Andrew, Teresa McBryan, and Hamidreza Marvi. "Helically-driven granular mobility and gravity-variant scaling relations." RSC advances 9.22 (2019): 12572-12579.
- Thoesen, Andrew, Sierra Ramirez, and Hamid Marvi. "Screw‐Generated Forces in Granular Media: Experimental, Computational, and Analytical Comparison."AIChE Journal 65.3 (2019): 894-903.
- Lightholder, Jack, Thoesen, Andrew, et al. "Asteroid Origins Satellite (AOSAT) I: An On-orbit Centrifuge Science Laboratory." Acta Astronautica 133 (2017): 81-94.
- Thoesen, A., McBryan, T., Green, M., Martia, J., Mick, D., Marvi, H. (2019) "Revisiting Scaling Laws for Robotic Mobility in Granular Media". International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA) 2020
- Thoesen, A., Ramirez, S., Marvi, H. "Screw-Powered Propulsion in Granular Media: An Experimental and Computational Study" International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA), May 25th 2018
- Nallapu, Ravi Teja, Thoesen, Andrew et al. "Optimized Bucket Wheel Design for Asteroid Excavation." 67th International Astronautical Congress, 2016
- Thangavelautham, J., Thoesen, A., Gadau, F., Hutchins, G., Alizadeh, I., “Low-Cost Science Laboratory in Microgravity Using a CubeSat Centrifuge Framework” 65th International Astronautical Congress, Toronto, Canada, 2014