Desert RATS Kicks Into High Gear

Desert Research and Technology Studies (RATS)
Fall 2009, Arizona desert

Desert RATS photos from the field!

Desert RATS are back in the Arizona desert to perform a range of mobility tests and extravehicular activity simulations. These tests will demonstrate feasibility of surface operation concepts, including rovers, EVA timelines, and ground support.

The terrain of the Arizona desert provides a testing environment geologically similar to the lunar surface. It is here that NASA first introduced the Lunar Electric Rover, a conceptual vehicle with an extended range and the capability to travel rugged planetary terrain.

List of Teams Participating

Participants from outside of NASA include:
  • The Smithsonian Institution of Washington
  • The United States Geological Survey, in Flagstaff, AZ
  • Arizona State University of Tempe, AZ
  • University of Texas at El Paso
  • University of Colorado Denver
  • Brown University in Providence, RI
  • The Mars Institute in Moffett Field, CA
NASA centers involved include:
  • Johnson Space Center, TX
  • Langley Research Center, VA
  • Jet Propulsion Laboratory and Ames Research Center, both in CA
  • Kennedy Space Center, FL
  • Goddard Space Flight Center, MD
  • Glenn Research Center, OH
  • Marshall Space Flight Center, AL
  • NASA Headquarters in Washington, D.C.

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