ACME Robotics Launches Community Forum to Discuss the Regolith Excavation Challenge

Released on: February 7, 2008, 10:13 am

Press Release Author: Don C. Dhabolt/ACME Robotics

Industry: Aerospace

Press Release Summary: Various NASA Challenge participants have established online
community web pages for discussing the challenge - now the Regolith Excavation
Challenge has a community web page too.

Press Release Body: Completely "Unofficial" and totally independent of NASA, CSEWI
and CSA, ACME Robotics has launched a community web page to discuss the upcoming
Regolith Excavation Challenge with other participants as well as the general public.

"I spend a lot of time on the Internet conducting research and preparing for the
challenge" states Don C. Dhabolt, Team Leader for ACME Robotics. "Other NASA
challenge participants have community web pages, why not the Regolith Challenge?
To fill the need, Don created the UNOFFICIAL Regolith Excavation Challenge Forum.

The biggest hurdle is convincing other teams to participate, Don believes. "It is a
competition. Everyone wants to win - everyone is quite secretive. However, I
believe many questions can be answered, opinions voiced and ideas shared without
revealing critical team information" he said.

There is a FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) section of the California Space
Education and Workforce Institute (CSEWI) Regolith Excavation Challenge website.
"While informative, it's not very personal," says Mr. Dhabolt. Having an online
community that specifically targets the challenge participants seemed to be the next
logical step.

Topics in the forum include Robotics, Rule Interpretations and General
Announcements. There is also a Calendar function allowing users to post upcoming
events. "I've been working on a USA map showing each team's general geographical
location and a team bio page too," Don says.

If users indicate a need for real-time chat, Mr. Dhabolt will implement that
function too. "My ultimate goal is making the road to the challenge an enjoyable
experience for everyone involved. The competition will be tough enough, that's for
sure," Don says, "At least we can get to know one another a little and have some fun
along the way." The UNOFFICIAL Regolith Excavation Challenge Forum can be found at Registration is free but required.

ACME Robotics officially announced their intent to enter the 2008 Regolith
Excavation Challenge on December 11, 2007. We dig Moon Dirt for FunT is their
slogan and Sponsorship opportunities are still available. The Competition is one of
NASA's Centennial challenges with a total purse of $750,000. Simply stated,
$500,000 will be awarded to the team robot that can dig the most (simulated) moon
dirt - or regolith - and shovel it into a container during a 30 minute time limit.

The California Space Education and Workforce Institute (CSEWI) will administer the
2008 Regolith Excavation Challenge, which is also Co-Hosted by the California Space
Authority (CSA). The event will be held August 2 and 3 in the Engineering Plaza on
the campus of California Polytechnic State University San Luis Obispo, California.

Don C. Dhabolt is the Team Leader of ACME Robotics, and the Director of Operations
for IT RealityString LLC, a small Information Technology Consulting firm located in
Eldora, Iowa and La Crosse, Wisconsin.

Web Site:

Contact Details: Contact:
Don C. Dhabolt
ACME Robotics Division
IT RealityString LLC
P.O. Box 9
Eldora, Iowa
800.779.0053, voice
866.430.9235, fax

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