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ITS NASA Human Exploration Rover Challenge

ITS Engineering College is one of the 3 colleges which have been invited by NASA for the NASA Human Rover Challenge in 2020.

A team of 5 ITS students along with their mentoring faculty will visit US in 2020 and present the Rover concept & prototype.

Watch this space for more...

                                                    About the Challenge@ITS

ITS Engineering College NASA Human Exploration Rover Challenge

The NASA Human Exploration Rover Challenge will be held in April at the U.S. Space & Rocket Center. The challenge will focus on designing, constructing and testing technologies for mobility devices to perform in different environments. This challenge will provide valuable experiences that engage students in the technologies and concepts that will be needed in future exploration missions. Rovers will be human-powered and carry two students, one female and one male, over a half-mile obstacle course of simulated extraterrestrial terrain of craters, boulders, ridges, inclines, crevasses and depressions. Team of five members from ITS Engineering College will be responsible for building their own rover, and the two course drivers must be chosen from the team.

Pic Courtesy: NASA



Each year, the NASA Human Exploration Rover Challenge features an engineering design challenge to engage students worldwide in the next phase of human space exploration. The annual event is a more complex follow-up to the successful NASA’s Great Moonbuggy Race. The competition challenges high school and college students to create a vehicle designed to traverse the simulated surface of another world. 

During its 20-year run, NASA’s Great Moonbuggy Race engaged more than 10,000 students and demonstrated that these budding scientists and engineers were capable of complex work. The NASA Human Exploration Rover Challenge continues that tradition by providing an authentic engineering experience. Student teams design, build and test technologies that enable rovers to perform in a variety of environments. The Rover Challenge inspires participants to become the engineers to design NASA’s next-generation space systems. 

Explorers can learn from the challenges of our predecessors as we pursue future missions. In 1971, Alan Shepard, Stuart Roosa and Edgar Mitchell launched on Apollo 14, an extraordinary, complex mission to the Moon. Like other missions, their story is one of man’s battle against almost impossible odds, a story of highs and lows. 

While Roosa remained in orbit aboard the capsule, one task assigned to Shepard and Mitchell was to explore the Cone Crater to better understand the Moon’s early history. Scientists believed that rocks near the crater’s edge would yield some of the oldest material. At one point during the trek, Shepard’s heart rate reached 150 beats per minute (bpm). Both astronauts were stopping to take breaks, perspiring and gulping intakes of oxygen, and the internal temperature of their suits was rising dramatically. The crew had been gone from the lunar module Antares for two hours, and were running out of time and oxygen. They had difficulty navigating the slopes and fell 30 minutes behind schedule. As a result, they reached a point within 50 feet of the rim of the crater before turning back toward Antares. The crew gathered 99 pounds (45 kilograms) of lunar material and achieved the goal of reaching the vicinity of the crater. 

As in the past, teams design and create rovers capable of traversing a challenging exoplanetary-like landscape. These engineering challenges, however, are motivated by the assignment of mission objective tasks to be accomplished along the way. Just as in the Apollo 14 surface mission described above, teams have to make real-time decisions about which mission objectives to attempt and which to leave behind—all driven by a limited, virtual eight-minute supply of oxygen. Instead of time penalties, teams earn points as they progress through all stages of the competition. The competition course requires two students, one female and one male, to traverse a terrain of approximately 0.50 miles that includes a simulated field of asteroid debris—boulders from 5 to 15 inches across; an ancient stream bed with pebbles approximately 6 inches deep; and erosion ruts and crevasses of varying widths and depths. The challenge’s weight and time requirements encourage the rover’s compactness, light weight, high performance and efficiency. As part of the competition—before teams’ first time on the course—rover entries are tested to see that they would fit into a lander equipment bay, a maximum 5 feet long by 5 feet tall by 5 feet in volume. Teams earn points by assembling the rover in the allotted time; designing a rover that is lightweight; successfully completing course obstacles; performing tasks throughout the mission; and meeting pre- and post-challenge requirements. Each team is permitted two excursions: The greater score of the two excursions will be used for the final team score. 

NASA’s Human Exploration Rover Challenge aligns with the Artemis mission to return to and explore the Moon by 2024. The competition emphasizes designing, constructing and testing technologies, including tools, mobility devices and traversing in unique environments. The Artemis program will prepare us for the Moon and propel us on to Mars. NASA plans to send the first woman and next man to the Moon by 2024, and develop human presence by 2028. Like Artemis, NASA’s Human Exploration Rover Challenge sends one female and one male on the excursion to discover unknown terrains. Lunar science on the surface of the Moon will be conducted by 2024 with polar and non-polar landers and rovers to explore areas not investigated by Apollo. This student design challenge encourages the next generation of scientists and engineers to aid in the design process by providing innovative designs and unique perspectives. The challenge also continues the agency’s legacy of providing valuable experience to students who, someday, may be responsible for planning future space missions, including crewed missions to other worlds.

 PROUD@ITS on NASA website 

ITS Engineering College Selected by NASA

Participants of 2017 from India

1. Skyline Institute of Engineering & Technology, Greater Noida, India 

2.  Lovely Professional University, Phagwara, India

3. Hindustan University, Chennai, India

4. Mukesh Patel School of Technology Management & Engineering, Mumbai, India

Participants of 2018 from India

1. Indo Swiss Training Centre - Team 1, Chandigarh, India

2. Lovely Professional University, Punjab, India

3. Noida Institute of Engineering and Technology, Uttar Pradesh, India

4. SRM Institute of Science and Technology, Chennai, India

Participants of 2019 from India

1. Lovely Professional University, Punjab, India

2. Mukesh Patel School of Technology Management and Engineering, West Mumbai, India

3. KIET Group of Institutions 

About the event 2020 from India

Registration Date: 10 October 2019.

Event Dates: April 17-18-19, 2020

Total no of teams allowed to participate: 4(Maximum)

Registration Fee: 225 US Dollars, 70 dollars refundable.

Total No of participants allowed: 7 (Including Mentor and one female pilot)

About the registration 2020

Registration process is considered toughest process of entire event. That is only because only 4 teams are selected among around 800 applications.

Once registered does not ensure the confirm participation until the interview is qualified.

They provide the registration fee submission link which appears only after a one by one quiz session.

We were fortunate to have the registration this year as we successfully completed all the activities and received payment link.

Once payment link received, it is advisable to make the payment soon.  

Click Here NASA 2020 Guidelines