Mars Rover Manipal is a multi-disciplinary student team from Manipal University striving to design and build next generation rover for exploration of extraterrestrial environment and applications of robotics in interplanetary missions.
What it takes to build a winning rover ...
... and a lot more
What we do?
We participate in the annual University Rover Challenge (URC) organized by Mars Society, USA. In URC 2017, our team finished 8th out of 82 teams across the globe and stood 1st among the Asian teams. Since our inception, the team has provided a platform to aspiring engineering students by pushing them beyond the theoretical knowledge they gain in classrooms to inculcate technical and practical skills. The team is also working on research related to the role of a rover in the field of space exploration and future Mars missions. Here is a video of our Critical Design Review, which was adjudged second best in the world:
Mars Rover Manipal has divided its work into four subsystems.
Electronics and Artificial Intelligence
The rover is brought to life by the cummulative efforts of the members of the electronics and artificial intelligence team. They are responsible for powering various segments of the rover,that work together to achieve desired performance of the rover over all the tasks. The team is also responsible for control and communication of the rover, and also works towards maximum customization of the products that we use onboard the rover. Camera feeds from various points on the rover are hauled back to the base station for maximum view of the rover's environment. The development of the autonomus system creates a closed loop scenario where various sensors of the rover communicate with each other to control the rover.
The mechanical team provides the basic skeleton of the rover which includes the wheels, suspension, chassis, robotic manipulator and the soil collection mechanism. The guidelines provided by URC form the basis over which each of our component is designed. Every part that is put on the rover undergoes an extensive development cycle to ensure its reliability. The development cycle includes a thorough study of the problem statement and design and analysis of each component on various CAE software.
The Science Cache team is responsible for soil sample analysis. On field the best possible soil for laboratory analysis is chosen based on data acquired from sensors. At the test station the team has to perform suitable tests on soil to determine Geological, Biological and Chemical properties of soil and determine the viability of the sample to investigate the possibility of life. The main goal is to find search for past- present - life and future possibility to support life.
Management subsystem of Mars Rover Manipal is responsible for all the non-technical work of the team. It is involved in the overall progress of the team by handling sponsorship, finance, public relations, publicity, media platforms and human resource management. The team designs posters and brochures, manages the website and provides videos for advertisement and sponsors. It is also responsible for the well-ordered and smooth functioning of the team’s day to day work and managing of all events.
Research subsystem of Mars Rover Manipal is responsible for compiling all the research work done by other subsystems of the team and publishing this research in indexed journals and national and international conference. The research team works on problems which are beyond the scope of University Rover Challenge (URC). They also work on development of proprietary technology and long term projects whose solutions will be used in future rovers.