This paper traces the development of terramechanics-the study of the mechanics of vehicle-terrain interaction that provides the foundation for a comprehensive understanding of the behaviour of a vehicle operating on unprepared terrain. It highlights the development of computer-aided methods for performance and design evaluation of tracked and off-road wheeled vehicles, based on the principles of terramechanics. Examples of the applications of these computer-aided methods to guiding the development and design of off-road vehicles on earth, as well as the evaluation of the performance of rovers for exploration of the Moon, Mars and beyond, are presented. These signify that results of research on terramechanics have been put into engineering practice in enhancing the development of terrestrial and extraterrestrial vehicles. Prospects for further development of terramechanics as well as challenges and opportunities in the field, are reviewed. Copyright

Additional Metadata
Keywords Computer-aided methods, Extraterrestrial rovers, Mobility, Off-road vehicles, Terramechanics
Persistent URL dx.doi.org/10.1504/IJVD.2014.063834
Journal International Journal of Vehicle Design
Citation
Wong, J.Y. (2014). Terramechanics and its applications to the evaluation of terrestrial and extraterrestrial vehicle mobility: Theory into practice. International Journal of Vehicle Design, 65(4), 384–410. doi:10.1504/IJVD.2014.063834