Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Prize Roundup: Maker Faire, Precursors, More

Team Phoenicia at the Maker Faire! - Team Phoenicia - In addition to the title subject, there's this:

PS Website update coming...and hopefully some big news.

Spacing out at Maker Faire - Make

@unrocket: Maker faire was cool, so was big sur, 1K miles in car from Friday to Sunday, not fun.

@paulsrobotics: RT @WPI_Robotics: Moonraker won an editor's choice ribbon at the #makerfaire! http://twitpic.com/1qi013

@NASAMICI: NASA MICI kickoff will go live in 4 hours. Check out our countdown clock at http://nasamiciconference.com #NASA

@InnoCentiveCEO: New $100K InnoCentive Challenge: Synthesis of a Nucleotide-Selective Label for Single-Stranded DNA http://bit.ly/dtjp8N #innovation #biotech

In NASA's new plans for robotic precursor missions to blaze a trail for astronauts, I usually imagine the small robotic scout missions as being a better fit than the larger ones for Google Lunar X PRIZE and similar prize teams. However, this presentation on NASA's robotic precursor missions gives one possibility for the mobile lander part of a Google Lunar X PRIZE team's effort contributing to part of a large NASA precursor mission. (Keeping in mind the limitation on government funding for the prize, it could be a follow-on to the prize effort itself). Slide 14, on a possible "Teleoperated Lunar Lander", includes:

Surface mobility experiment : Sojourner class “rover” at < 35kg with 1-2 instruments (2kg)
– Context camera, Dust particle size analyzer, Alpha Particle X-ray Spectrometer
– Fetch capability