Steven Hard is the Project Manager for IV&V’s OC Flight-1 effort. He is also a member of the West Virginia University (WVU) Robotics Team in Morgantown, West Virginia.
OC Flight-1 development team member Alan Didion and I went to the State Fair of West Virginia to join the West Virginia University Benjamin M. Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources (CEMR) booth set up within the West Virginia University building on the grounds. We represented WVU’s chapter of the Student Partnership for Cosmic Exploration (SPACE), which is a multi-disciplinary student group aimed at helping students get internships with NASA and broadening student awareness of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) opportunities. Alan is the co-president of SPACE, whereas I’m just a member spreading the word.
We brought with us the WVU Mars Rover, which was built by the WVU Robotics Team and competed in the Mars RASC-AL RoboOps Challenge. We also brought both a mockup and a real version of the TubeSat flying on the OC Flight-1 mission. We talked about the results of the RoboOps competition, showed a demonstration of the mobility and manipulation capabilities of the WVU Mars Rover by turning in place, performing short arc-steering translations, and retrieving rocks with the robotic arm. The vision system was also displayed using a nearby Video Graphics Array (VGA) monitor. Discussions transitioned to the Space Flight Design Challenge concept and the OC Flight-1 mission as interest propagated across the display table.
This booth was a wonderful venue for getting the word out about our efforts. We all very much enjoyed the State Fair of West Virginia and hope that our message made an impression.
NASA’s Independent Verification & Validation Program