Lima Senior High School’s Rover Challenge team made school history posting the best times ever in the school’s 15 years participating in the NASA Human Exploration Rover Challenge at the U.S. Space and Rocket Center in Huntsville, Ala.
Lima Senior was again the only high school in the state to compete in the contest, formerly called the Great Moonbuggy Race. The event, in its 25th year, was held this past weekend.
One of Lima Senior’s teams finished in 7th place and the other in 11th place. Both times were half of last year’s and the best in the school’s history. Drivers Kyius Simpson and Morgan Twining posted the overall second best set up time at seven seconds.
The rover challenge focuses on designing, constructing and testing technologies for mobility devices to perform in different environments NASA explores, including moons, planets, asteroids and comets.
The rovers are 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 ruts.
As part of the challenge, and before traversing the course, unassembled rovers must be carried by the drivers to the course starting line. The rovers are then assembled, readied for the race and evaluated for safety.
The top three times in each division (one high school and one college university division) will be those having the shortest total times in assembling their rovers and traversing the course. Each team is permitted two runs of the course.