Chassis and Suspension
This year's rover features a carbon fiber chassis and rocker-bogie design, a passive suspension system, which ensures a neutral chassis angle and contact between all six wheels and the ground. A mechanical hard stop has also been implemented to prevent bogie inverse, a common issue with this type of suspension system.
One of the more versatile components of the rover is the robotic arm. With six degrees of freedom, the arm is capable of completing complicated motion trajectories, and can operate switches, turn valves, and connect tow carabiners, among other assistant-related tasks. It can also lift over 5 kg worth of tools and equipment.
Soil Sample Return
As the most diverse subteam, they combine their design ingenuity with their geological expertise to navigate the competition in search of evidence of life. Using satellite imagery and surveys of the area, they have created maps of different soil properties and have used these to find several sights with signs of recent water erosion.
Steering and Drive
Our six independently-drive wheels feature in-hub motors in order to increase the rover's ground clearance and utilize skid steering to allow for zero-radius turning. The wheels consist of a polyethylene hub with a polyurethane foam and rubber layer to decrease impact forces and increase traction with the ground.