LOCKHEED MARTIN EXPLORER SCOUTS RETURN HOME WINNERS AT GREAT MOONBUGGY RACE
NEW ORLEANS, LA., 12-MAY-03 -- After months of hard work working on specially-designed moonbuggies at the University of New Orleans Engineering department, area Explorer Scouts took some of the top honors at the 10th Annual Great Moonbuggy Race at the U.S. Space & Rocket Center in Huntsville, Alabama last month. The high school Explorer team finished third and the college team finished eighth.
The local high school and UNO college students are members of Explorer Post 314, sponsored by Lockheed Martin. Contributing sponsors included American Kenda Rubber; Avis; Beerman Precision; Boater’s World Marine Centers; Karl Carlone; Emerson Power Transmission; Gulf Cycles; Hayes Brake; LaQuinta Inn; Schlumpf Innovations; Shimano American; Transtar Metals; the University of New Orleans, Louisiana Engineering Advancement Program; and Worksman Cycles.
NASA designed and built the original moonbuggies over 30 years ago. This year as part of a national competition to help spur engineering and science, the students designed and built two vehicles that met a series of engineering challenges similar to those faced by the original Apollo team.
The vehicle must fit in a four foot cube, turn within a 20 foot radius, and be human-propelled by two passengers -- one male and one female.
The high school and college teams faced many obstacles during the build phase, but with Lockheed Martin employees from Michoud Operations as advisors, the students resolved every issue.
The high school team worked on modifying last year’s winning design, a reverse tricycle called Project-X. The university team favored a four-wheel design with fully independent suspension and four-wheel drive, which they too, modified from last year’s design.
The criteria for winning are: meeting design requirements, vehicle assembly time, plus elapsed time on a half mile obstacle course.
The high school team’s Project-X finished third among 29 teams from 10 states. Squaring up against some of the top universities in the country and Puerto Rico, the college team finished eighth against 22 other teams.
Lockheed Martin designs and builds the Space Shuttle External Tank at the NASA Michoud Assembly Facility in eastern New Orleans and has sponsored the Engineering Explorer Post since its inception in 1996.
More details and photos about the moonbuggy race can be found at: http://www.moonbuggy.msfc.nasa.gov.