The use of robotics to explore celestial bodies has become the most popular and cost effective. Boeing: the world’s largest aerospace company brought us the challenge of designing a Mars rover that is capable of operating within 100 feet of its starting position and can collect rock samples. In addition, the system had to be controlled over the internet.

For this challenge, the Belgium Campus students collaborated with students from the University of Melbourne, Australia. The Melbourne Electrical engineering team worked on the electronics side of the project, whilst the Belgium Campus students were responsible for the software aspect: Belgium Campus students were tasked with the planning, execution, and implementation of the client side software; as well as the final testing.

Our Robotics and Hardware programming elective subjects put our students at an advantage for this challenge. The Belgium Campus robotics lab lets the students interact and develop their knowledge of industrial devices and technologies.

For the Mars Rover challenge, the collaborative team from the two Universities was given a budget of $1000.00 to design a rover with an emphasis on safety. The students met all of Boeing’s specifications and created an internet based control system which allowed the pilot to collect and deliver samples.

The Boeing project is one of the many elements that solidify our stance as an innovation-focused institution. Such projects reflect our commitment to providing an industry relevant learning environment for our students.