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General Description and Prizes
The 20th Annual Great Moonbuggy Race ® was held April 25 - 27, 2013 in Huntsville, Alabama, at the U.S. Space & Rocket Center. Students are required to design a vehicle that addresses a series of engineering problems that are similar to problems faced by the original Moonbuggy team.
Each Moonbuggy will be human powered and carry two students, one female and one male, over a half-mile simulated lunar terrain course including "craters", rocks, "lava" ridges, inclines and "lunar" soil.
Moonbuggy entries are expected to be of "proof-of-concept" and engineering test model nature, rather than final production models. Each student team of six members is responsible for building their own buggy, and the course drivers, who are chosen from each team, must also be builders of the vehicle.
As a part of the competition, and prior to course testing, the un-assembled Moonbuggy entries must be carried to the course starting line with the unassembled components contained in a volume of 4'x 4'x 4' (dimension requirements similar to those for the original Lunar Roving Vehicle). At the starting line, the entries will be assembled and readied for course testing and evaluated for safety. Assembly occurs one time prior to the first course run.
The top three winning teams in each division (one high school division and one college division) will be those having the shortest total times in assembling their moonbuggies and traversing the terrain course. Each team is permitted two runs of the terrain course, and the shortest course time will be added to the assembly time for the final total event time.
Press releases and photos available at http://moonbuggy.msfc.nasa.gov/press.html
Prizes will be awarded to the top three winning teams in both the High School Division and College Division. Awards will be for the six registered team members and their faculty/instructor advisor.
Additional awards will be given for: Featherweight Award (replaces Most Unique), Most Improved, Rookie Award, Best Report Award , AIAA Telemetry/Electronics Award, and the System Safety Award. Another honor, the Neil Armstrong Best Design Award, is described below.
Neil Armstrong Best Design Award
A prize will also be awarded to the team whose Moonbuggy design represents the best technical approach toward solving the engineering problem of navigating the lunar surface. The award is based not on Moonbuggy race performance but upon the technical approach taken by teams in their design. The design competition is optional. For more information about design criteria, please go to the Great Moonbuggy Race ® Neil Armstrong Best Design Award.