13 October 2008

Lunar X Prize's New Team: Omega Envoy

New Team in Florida

Last year, I attempted to start a group for the Google Lunar X Prize to land a rover on the moon. I failed miserably because I couldn't arouse interests in my co-workers and classmates. (Though I found out that there is a restricted Google Group for the Florida Tech team. I have no idea if that group is still active.) A month ago, a friend of mine mentioned that a group of students at University of Central Florida is starting a statewide group called Omega Envoy to tackle the Lunar X Prize challenge. I went to a couple of their meetings, and now I am committed to the group.

On 6 October 2008, Google announced Omega Envoy as one of the official groups competing for the Lunar X Prize. We are competing against difficult groups such as the Carnegie Mellon team. I am listed as Omega Envoy's Software Lead with a small team of software engineers residing in both Melbourne and Orlando, but currently find myself doing very non-software stuff: Researching engineering design process, systems engineering and concept of operations, etc.

Below is a couple of articles mentioning the team:
Google Lunar XPrize Official Page
CNN SciTech Blog

Call for Advisers

We are currently in urgent need of technical advisers. So far most of the focus had been on the financial aspect of the endeavor, therefore technical advisers were overlooked due to the tight schedule of becoming an official team. We would like engineers/professors (current or former, with a high interest in space technology) to guide the team on several areas: structure/stress, propulsion, materials, electronics/robotics, mission planning, and heating/cooling.

This will be done on a volunteer basis. None of us are getting paid. (In fact I'm losing even more sleep now between work, class, and the Lunar X Prize.)

If you are interested, please email me at: tchen [At) omegaenvoy {d0T} org.