Registration is now open for teams wishing to compete in the $1.5 million energy storage competition known as the Night Rover Challenge, sponsored by NASA and managed by Cleantech Open of Palo Alto, Calif. Registration for the competition will close October 25, 2013. The competition will be held January 20, 2014 through March 24, 2014.
For information, visit Night Rover Challenge, Challenge rules, requirements, and how to register.
“The goal of the Night Rover Challenge is to stimulate innovations in energy storage technologies of value in extreme space environments, such as the surface of the moon, or for electric vehicles and renewable energy systems here on Earth,” said Michael Gazarik, NASA’s associate administrator for Space Technology at NASA Headquarters in Washington. “NASA wants this challenge to generate new ideas that will allow planetary rovers the ability to take on a night shift, and possibly create new energy storage technologies for applications of benefit here on our home planet.”
To win, a team must demonstrate a stored energy system that can power a simulated solar-powered exploration vehicle that can operate through multiple cycles of daylight and extended periods of darkness. During the Night Rover Challenge energy storage systems will receive electrical energy from a simulated solar collector during daylight hours. During darkness, the stored energy will be used for simulated thermal management, scientific experimentation, communication, and rover movement.
This is a Centennial Challenge in which NASA provides the prize purse for technological achievements. The challenge is extended to individuals, groups and companies. Unlike most contracts or grants, awards will be made only after solutions are demonstrated successfully. Since the program’s inception in 2005, NASA’s Centennial Challenges has awarded more than $6 million to 15 different competition-winning teams through 23 events. Competitors have included private companies, citizen inventors and academia working outside the traditional aerospace industry.
The Night Rover Challenge is part of the Centennial Challenges Program within NASA’s Space Technology Mission Directorate, which is innovating, developing, testing and flying hardware for use in NASA’s future missions. For more information about NASA’s investment in space technology, visit: http://www.nasa.gov/spacetech