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NASA’s Second Annual Lunabotics Mining Competition:

Date : May 23rd – May 28th 2011

Location : Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex

The competition was a week long event with 3 practice days and 2 official competition days. On the last practice day, the team did their third practice run and during this time the robot suffered from a sheared pin on the driveshaft. With only half an hour before quarantine of the robot, the team did the best they could with the tools they had on hand to fix the problem. With limited mobility during the official competition run, the team was not able to successfully deposit simulant into the hopper but was able to demonstrate the functionality of the robot’s excavation system. 72 teams registered for the competition, 46 attended with 12 of them being international teams, 36 teams competed and only 14 were able to collect regolith.The LunaCats ended up placing 22nd in NASA’s Second Annual Lunabotics Mining Competition.

NASA’s Third Annual Lunabotics Mining Competition:

Date : May 21st – May 26th 2012

Location : Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex

The competition was a week long event with 2 practice days and 3 official competition days. This year, teams were only allowed one practice run in the LunArena with the lunar regolith. However teams were allowed to practice in the practice pit filled with playsand and the lunabots weren’t quarantined at the end of the practice days. The 2012 LunaCats had the distinct honor of being the first team to sucessfully pass inspection and communications tests. The team did their practice run and was able to collect 24.6kg of regolith. During their first competition run, the team had some unexpected problems with the data acquisition board (DAQ) resulting in communication issues with the lunabot. The team rallied together to remedy the problem and came back with a successful second run and was able to mine 31.8kg of regolith. Overall, 55 teams competed and only 17 teams were able to successfully mine the minimum of 10 kg. The 2012 LunaCats placed 9th in NASA’s Third Annual Lunabotics Mining Competition!

NASA’s Fourth Annual Lunabotics Mining Competition:

Date : May 20st – May 24th 2013

Location : Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex

The competition was a weeklong event with 2 practice days and 3 official competition days. The 2013 LunaCats were once again the first team to successfully pass both inspection and communications tests as well as being the first practice run. During the first competition run, the robot was able to mine 36.6kg. During the second run, the LunaCats were able to mine 47.6kg of the simulant. These two incredible runs led to 3rd place in the Mining Category! The LunaCats also took home 1st place for the Efficient Use of Communications Power Award! UNH was proudly the only small engineering school in the Top 10.

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