Sunday, October 07, 2007

Technology Ranch on the New Regolith Excavation Challenge Rules

Regolith Excavation Challenger Technology Ranch has been analyzing, and commenting on, the 2008 draft rules that require mobility and "visual" identification of a target, among other changes. The challenge is significantly different this year. There's a discussion in the comments that emphasizes this point. The comment discussion also shows the exacting level of detail needed in the definition of rules for this type of competition.

The comment discussion on possible teamwork, rules clarification, and so on brings to mind the potential usefulness of a central discussion forum for Excavation Challenge teams, so that, if they want to engage in a public discussion about the rules, suppliers, teams, and so on, there's an obvious place for them to go. The Automotive X PRIZE has a forum for this type of communication. I'm not sure how difficult it would be to start such a forum, but it would be nice if an off-the-shelf software package would allow the California Space Authority to set up a similar forum for the Regolith Excavation Challenge.