Practice sessions get under way for the third annual Lunabotics Mining Competition at the Rocket Garden at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex in Florida.
More than 50 teams of undergraduate and graduate students from eight countries are participating. The teams have designed and built remote-controlled or autonomous robots that can excavate simulated lunar soil. During the competition, the teams' designs, known as lunabots, will go head-to-head to determine whose machine can collect and deposit the most simulated moon dust within a specified amount of time. The competition is a NASA Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate project designed to engage and retain students in the science, technology, engineering and mathematics, or STEM, fields of study. The project provides a competitive environment that may result in innovative ideas and solutions that potentially could be applied to future NASA missions. For more information, visit http://www.nasa.gov/lunabotics. Photo credit: NASA/Frankie Martin