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April 16, 2021

NASA Announces Winners of 2021 Human Exploration Rover Challenge (HERC).


Photo: A family of Osprey outside the NASA Kennedy Space Center Vehicle Assembly Building (VAB) in Cape Canaveral, Fla. on Thursday, May 13, 2010. Photo Credit: (NASA/Bill Ingalls).


Photo: Mars 2020 Strategic Mission Manager Pauline Hwang gives remarks during a NASA Perseverance rover initial surface checkout briefing, Friday, February 19, 2021, at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory Pasadena, California. The Perseverance Mars rover landed on Mars Thursday, February 18, 2021. Photo Credit: (NASA/Bill Ingalls).


Photo: The Northrop Grumman Cygnus space freighter after its release from the Canadarm2 robotic arm completing a 93-day cargo mission at the International Space Station. Image Credit: (NASA Johnson).

HUNTSVILLE, Ala., April 16, 2021 — High school and college students from around the U.S. and world have spent the last eight months designing, building, and testing their creations for NASA’s 27th annual Human Exploration Rover Challenge - one of seven NASA Artemis Student Challenges. The winners were announced during a virtual awards ceremony on April 16.

The Human Exploration Rover Challenge (HERC) tasks the U.S. and international student teams to design, engineer, and test a human-powered rover on a course that simulates the terrain found on rocky bodies in the solar system. The groups also must perform mission tasks while negotiating the course, including sample retrievals and spectrographic analysis.

Despite the cancellation of on-site competition activities at the U.S. Space & Rocket Center near NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama, due to the global COVID-19 pandemic, the high school and college teams competed in multiple designs, documentation, and presentation categories, and were recognized for their successful efforts.

“The challenges you faced with this competition go beyond anything we’ve seen before, from designing the wheels and mission tools to executing mission requirements like sample retrievals and deploying instruments,” said Marshall Center Director Jody Singer. “To all of the students who took on these tasks and participated in Rover Challenge, we salute you and congratulate you on your accomplishments.”

“The students had to think outside the box to figure out how to develop these robust vehicles during a global pandemic,” said Miranda Fike, activity lead for the challenge at Marshall. “These members of the Artemis Generation rose to the occasion and delivered their reviews, presentations, designs, and videos without fail.”

NASA presented Awards in nine categories:

• Overall Winner

High School Division:

College/University Division:

• Project Review Award

• Task Challenge Award

• Safety Award

• Ingenuity Award

• Phoenix Award

• Videography Award

• STEM Engagement Award

• Social Media Award

For more than 25 years, the annual NASA Human Exploration Rover Challenge and its sponsors have encouraged student teams from the United States and around the world to push the limits of innovation and imagine what it will take to explore the Moon, Mars, and other planets.

The Office of STEM Engagement manages Human Exploration Rover Challenge (HERC) at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville. The competition reflects the goals of the Artemis program, which seeks to put the first woman and first person of color on the Moon. NASA’s Office of STEM Engagement uses challenges and competitions to further the agency’s goal of encouraging students to pursue degrees and careers in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.


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Edited & Posted by the Editor | 10:39 PM | Link to this Post

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