The proposed Station Manipulator Arm Augmented Reality Trainer (SMAART) technology directly supports the Augmented Reality topic of the NASA Space Technology Mission Directorate (STMD) by allowing astronauts to train/mission rehearse the complex resupply capsule capture task with the mission specific hardware. Currently all training conducted once on-board the ISS is accomplished using a simulation program that does not include use of the actual SSRMS inceptors or feature real-world views. This proposed program also compliments the current STMD Game Changing Development Program IDEAS - Integrated Display and Environmental Awareness System. This program led by Kennedy Space Center with support from Ames Research Center is developing a transparent head mounted display augmented reality system to support situational awareness for operations on Earth and in Space. The emerging SMAART technology can be used to support and/or enhance IDEAS-based applications.
The SMAART-based technology is a leap forward from conventional augmented reality in that it will allow the virtual objects to interact directly, not passively with real-world objects in the combined mixed-world environment. Furthermore, using the new geometry-based keying technology, any vehicle or environment can potentially become an in situ simulator. Examples include aviation, a shipyard crane cab, a UAS ground station, and many others. Imagine that a naval aviator can repeatedly practice carrier landings in the actual aircraft at a safe altitude to improve proficiency in a wide variety of conditions before ever attempting actual landings on the carrier. This technology will find applications in the area of hazardous duty training for first responders and the military and broad commercial applications in training for industrial maintenance tasks and operator training with complex machines and vehicles.