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RoboClyde is a team of students from the faculties of Engineering, Science and Business building a Mars Rover demonstration for the European Rover Challenge (ERC).
The ERC is an international competition with the goal to develop Mars Rovers which will be tested during the main event in a simulated Mars Yard.
The main event takes place in the second week of September every year at the Mars Yard located in Kielce, Poland.
At the ERC the rovers have to complete tasks from four areas:
For the scientific task, the rover has to collect and analyze soil samples. For this purpose, surface samples as well as drilling samples are collected from a depth of up to 30 cm. The soil samples are then to be carried onboard the rover and analyzed for different properties.
A further area of activity is based on a situation in the future in which humans and robots will coexist on Mars. The rovers should be able to support humans in their work on Mars and carry out work that could be too dangerous for humans. The concrete task during the ERC is to work on a control panel with buttons, switches, and other electrical components. We are developing a robotic arm to achieve this.
For the collection task, we have to find several hidden batons, pick them up and transport them to the delivery point. The difficulty is that all steps should be carried out autonomously. This will be done using the semi-autonomous software that is being developed at RoboClyde.
In the difficult and undeveloped terrain of Mars, mobility plays a decisive role. Therefore, this aspect is also taken into account by the ERC. The rovers have to drive autonomously through difficult terrains, such as sliding slopes or stony craters. For this task, we are building a six-wheel rocker-bogie chassis for our Rover.
Join Strathclyde’s ERC team ‘RoboClyde’ to take part in this competition using the following link:
Get your membership now and be part of RoboClyde.