Uploaded on Apr 1, 2010
The Bevill State drafting design engineering technology team is in the final stages of preparation for the 17th annual Great Moonbuggy Race April 9-10 at the NASA U.S. Space and Rocket Center in Huntsville.
The team hosted a trial run on Wednesday, April 1, at the practice course constructed by students and employees at the BSCC softball facility. The practice course simulates the NASA course the students will compete on next week.
Numerous faculty, staff, and students came out to support the team and watch the practice runs. The teams encountered challenges along the way with their moonbuggies, but drafting instructor Maurice Ingle, who is the project sponsor, said that is all part of the experience.
This is about as close to a real-life scenario as we can offer our students, Ingle said. I have worked in industry and been on a deadline and have a machine not working. They are getting an excellent opportunity to problem solve, work under deadlines, and learn as they work.
Bevill State will be one of 66 teams from around the world competing in the Great Moonbuggy Race and one of three community colleges participating this year. This is the first year any two-year institution has entered the competition. Teams from India, Germany, Bangladesh, Romania, Serbia, Canada, and Puerto Rico will join teams from across the United States.
I am so proud of the work our students have done, Ingle said. Today was a good practice for us in front of a crowd to prepare for the race. We still have some changes and alterations to make, but it is that process that has made this so good for the students.
The BSCC team has had great community support for the project, with sponsorships including Senator Charles Bishop, Alabama Power Company, Alabama Power Service Organization, Alabama Powers Plant Miller and Plant Gorgas, Drummond Company, BAE Systems, the Alabama Governors Office of Workforce Development, the Alabama Coal Association, Target Corporation, Jim Walter Resources, Focus Walker County, Duskin Point Marina, Wilson Machine, Mr. Bucky Rizzo, Lineco Hydraulics, the Walker County Center of Technology, Fastenal, Bobs Bikes, the City of Sumiton, the Daily Mountain Eagle, TV-55, 1360 AM , and JIMS Industrial Supply.
The Great Moonbuggy Race requires students to design a vehicle that addresses a series of engineering problems that are similar to problems faced by the original moonbuggy team in 1969.
Each moonbuggy will be human powered and carry two students, one female and one male, over a half-mile simulated lunar terrain course including "craters", rocks, "lava" ridges, inclines and "lunar" soil. Each student team of six members is responsible for building their own buggy, and the course drivers, who are chosen from each team, must also be builders of the vehicle.
As a part of the competition, and prior to course testing, the un-assembled moonbuggy entries must be carried to the course starting line, with the unassembled components contained in a volume of 4'x 4'x 4' (dimension requirements similar to those for the original Lunar Roving Vehicle). At the starting line, the entries will be assembled and readied for course testing and evaluated for safety. Assembly occurs one time prior to the first course run.
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