Broadcast 1179 (Special Edition)

22 Jun 2009 Chris Carberry, Kevin Sloan
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Guests: Chris Carberry; Kevin Sloan. Topics: The Mars Society upcoming 12th annual conference, University Rover Challenge, humans to Mars, heavy lift vehicle. Chris Carberry, Executive Director of the Mars Society was our guest for the first hour to discuss the upcoming 12th Annual International Mars Society Convention. To learn more about the convention and The Mars Society, visit www.marssociety.org/portal/c/Conventions/2009/convention-2009-event. Chris not only went through the list of keynote speakers but we talked about the Mars Blitz to lobby members of Congress, taking a tour of Goddard Spaceflight Center, and more. We also talked about FMARS at Devon Island and the MDRS program. Some of the highlights for the convention include programs on the space telescopes, Saturn, radiation and more. The list of keynote speakers and topics can be found at www.marssociety.org/portal/c/Conventions/2009. During the last segment of the program, Kevin Sloan returned as our guest to give us the results of the University Rover Challenge (URC). The team that won the Challenge was York University in Canada and they won $1,000. York University team members and their rover will be at the Mars Society Convention so those attending can see it in operation. Visit www.marssociety.org/portal/c/urc for more information on the URC and the other universities that placed in the contest. Videos and pictures of the teams and robots are on the website so check them out. To win, a rover team had to successfully undertake four missions and score the most points: 1)Extremophile Search Task - Search for signs of life in the remote, barren terrain of MDRS; 2) Construction Task - Rover must venture out to a loose equipment panel, and secure it to its structure by tightening several loose bolts; 3) Site Survey Task - Rover to spot several distant markers and provide their exact coordinates; 4) Emergency Navigation Task - A distressed astronaut has gone down while walking back to the Hab so the rover must find your colleague and deliver emergency supplies before it's too late. Listen to Kevin explain how the rovers carried out these tasks. Also, a listener asked about a JPL rover doing these challenges. You do not want to miss Kevin's comments about the JPL rover and this challenge. If you have questions or comments for Chris Carberry about the Mars Society, the convention or any of his comments, please email him at carberry@marssociety.org. If you have questions or comments about the URC or for Kevin Sloan, please contact him at kevin@marssociety.org.

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