NASA has awarded $30,000 in prize money to each of the five teams that won in the third ground tournament round of a $5 million competition that seeks to promote the development of small satellites for future space exploration missions.
The space agency said Tuesday the winning teams in the Cube Quest Challenge’s ground tournament-3 include Team Miles from Fluid & Reason, Cislunar Explorers from Cornell University, CU-E3 from University of Colorado, KitCube from MIT and EDS Triteia from the University of California, San Diego.
The competition consists of four ground tournaments, a lunar derby and a deep space derby and offers an opportunity for the final three teams to launch their Cubesats onboard NASA’s Orion spacecraft as part of the Exploration Mission-1, which is scheduled to launch in 2018.
NASA will select the three winning teams for the EM-1 flight during the challenge’s final ground tournament to be held in February and will subject the three teams to a safety review prior to the first unmanned lunar flyby mission.
The Cube Quest Challenge is part of NASA’s Centennial Challenges program.