Schools in Germany, Puerto Rico Win NASA Moonbuggy Contest

Schools in Germany, Puerto Rico Win NASA Moonbuggy Contest

The International Space Education Institute of Leipzig, Germany and the University of Puerto Rico in Humacao claimed first place of their respective divisions in the 17th Annual Great Moonbuggy Race, NASA announced Saturday.

More than 70 student teams from around the world competed to design, build and race lightweight, human-powered buggies that tackle many of the same engineering challenges NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) encountered in developing the Apollo lunar rover in the 1960s.

The winners are selected based on vehicle assembly and race times in each division. The International Space Education Institute, also known as “Team Germany,” won first place in the high school division after finishing the half-mile course that simulates the lunar surface in 3 minutes 37 seconds. The University of Puerto Rico at Humacao won the college division, completing the course in 4 minutes and 18 seconds.

Tammy Rowan, manager of MSFC’s Academic Affairs Office, was quoted by NASA as saying: “it’s our goal to augment and enrich the classroom experience, and inspire a new generation of scientists, engineers and explorers to carry on NASA’s mission of discovery throughout our solar system and deliver untold benefits back home on Earth.”

The race, organized by MSFC, took place on April 9-10, 2010 at the U.S. Space & Rocket Center in Huntsville, AL. For more information on these and other winning teams, see the press release or visit

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