Many children and amateur engineers — and even professional engineers — fantasize about designing things for NASA. Most people aren’t aware that NASA works with the public quite often! One of the most interesting ways to interact with NASA is through their Centennial Challenges, where they hold public contests to solve certain problems.
To Mars and Back: Make the Robotic Rockets to Hunt for Life
The current Centennial challenge is all about 3D printed habitats. The goal here is to be able to “print” a habitat using local indigenous materials, or recycled materials. This allows you to only have to ship the machinery, and not raw material. That may not sound like it would make that big of a difference but in places that are particularly difficult or expensive to get to, like the moon, every bit of weight saved in shipping is valuable.
The contest is split into 3 phases:
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