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AIAA SP-016-1992

Guide to the Serviceable Spacecraft Grasping/Berthing/Docking Interfaces

As space vehicles and structures become larger and more complex, the development of systems to assist humans in assembling, op-erating, maintaining, and performing space rescue or retrieval of these vehicles and structures becomes increasingly important. With the diversity of international spacecraft, both manned and unmanned, planned to be in orbit in the not too distant future, a set of guidelines for berthing and docking subsys-tems is mandatory if servicing, resupply and retrieval is to become practical on an international level. Successful interaction between these space systems, and with ground and/or space-based humans, requires standardized and effective operational interface designs, particularly with respect to space grasping/berthing/docking interface mechanisms. This document addresses the design guidelines for such mechanisms.

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American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics [AIAA]


As the voice of the U.S. standards and conformity assessment system, the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) empowers its members and constituents to strengthen the U.S. marketplace position in the global economy while helping to assure the safety and health of consumers and the protection of the environment.