ROADS on Mars / ROADS Freestyle — News for teams (March 31, 2020)
ROADS Freestyle Challenge
If your Mars skills feel like they’re going dull with so many activities suspended right now, we have great news for you! We’ve launched a new challenge that any team can do even while observing “safer-at-home” policies in place for coronavirus. It’s called ROADS on Mars Freestyle Challenge and registration is now open!
About the Freestyle challenge
- Roughly follows the objectives of the original ROADS on Mars challenge, but only uses items your team members in their homes.
- Still a team activity (not a solo adventure!), so one of the challenges is to devise how your team will work together while also staying safe under “stay-at-home” policies.
- Is a completely separate challenge from the original ROADS on Mars — which, yes, means your team’s progress on ROADS doesn’t really count toward Freestyle. However….
- Is open to all K–12 students in the U.S. whether or not they registered for the original ROADS. So if you didn’t get to register for ROADS, now is your chance to sign up for a Mars mission! (And if you did sign up for the original ROADS, this is a nice opportunity for your team to keep working together toward Mars.)
- Top prize is a trip to a NASA center! (Date to be determined, of course.)
- “Best in Mission Objective” prize for most of the Mission Objectives.
- Register by: Monday, April 13
- Submit your team’s mission documentation by: Monday, April 27
- Freestyle website
In particular, please review the details — and download a copy of the Mission Objectives document — on the Freestyle Details page! And if you have any questions, please email us: firstname.lastname@example.org
Cool things to watch online
Our most recent “Meet an Expert” Zoom chat was last week — if you missed it, it’s now up on our website and YouTube. We also have another one coming up next week, plus a recommendation for some lectures from NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. We know that joining a webinar can be tough right now, not least because everyone else is clogging up the internet trying to do the same thing, but if you’re able to tune into any of these, we think you’ll find them useful.
Upcoming “Meet an Expert”
We are SO excited that our next expert chat will be with none other than Fred Haise, one of the Apollo 13 astronauts! We really hope you’ll join us for this one!
- Fred Haise (from Apollo 13!!)
- Tuesday, April 7, 2020
- 11 a.m. (Pacific Time) / 2 p.m. (Eastern Time)
- Webinar instructions on our website
Last week’s “Meet an Expert”
On March 26 we chatted with John Rummel, a senior scientist at the SETI Institute, about “planetary protection” — aka, keeping Earth (and other solar system bodies) safe from microbes. If you missed it, you can view the archived video on our website.
Lecture webcasts from NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory
JPL has some pretty cool talks coming up as part of their von Kármán Lecture Series, and they’ve taken them online. Check these out if you can!
- How NASA Observes Earth from Air & Orbit — April 16, 7 p.m. (Pacific Time)
- Becoming a NASA Engineer — May 7 (time TBA)
- Making a Mars Rover — June 18, 7 p.m. (Pacific Time)