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NASA launches $15,000 competition for innovative thinkers, developers

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HOUSTON – NASA is calling for all innovators and out-of-the-box thinkers for help on their next big project, the Venus Rover, according to a press release.

The space agency is looking for assistance in creating an obstacle avoidance sensor for the planet’s first possible rover.

The challenge may sound easy to some, but Venus is an extreme world.

With temperatures reaching more than 840 degrees Fahrenheit and a surface pressure 90 times that of earth, Venus has the power to turn lead into a puddle and to crush a nuclear submarine with ease.

Exploring the planet will be difficult enough. In order for the rover to travel, the device will need to detect obstacles in its path.

However, the only issue is the mechanism cannot be electronic since the current state-of-the-art electronics can’t work over 250 degrees.

That is why NASA is turning to the global community of innovators and inventors for a solution.

Participants will have an opportunity to win the first-place prize of $15,000. Second place wins $10,000; and third place, $5,000.

NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory is working with the NASA Tournament Lab to execute the challenge on the heroX crowdsourcing platform. Submissions will be accepted through May 29, 2020.

For more information about the challenge and how to enter, visit www.herox.com/VenusRover/