NASA and the National Institute of Aerospace (NIA) invite undergraduate and graduate student teams to participate in the 2021 RASC-AL Special Edition: Moon to Mars Ice & Prospecting Challenge.

Design, build and test off-world water extraction prototypes.

The 2021 RASC-AL Special Edition: Moon to Mars Ice & Prospecting Challenge seeks proposals from eligible teams of undergraduate and graduate students in the U.S. to design and build prototype hardware that can extract water and assess subsurface density profiles from a simulated off-world test bed to advance critical technologies needed on the surface of the Moon and Mars.

Up to 10 teams will be selected to receive $10,000 to build their proposed concept. Finalist teams will travel to NASA’s Langley Research Center (LaRC) in Hampton, VA* during the summer of 2021 to participate in a multi-day competition where the universities’ prototypes will compete to extract the most water from an analog environment simulating lunar and Martian surfaces, while using system telemetry to distinguish between overburden layers (i.e., prospecting) and create a digital core of the various layers. 

For full competition details, including design parameters, testing environment, and submission guidelines, please visit the RASC-AL Special Edition Website:

Interested student teams and their faculty advisors should submit an online Notice of Intent by October 1, 2020 and a detailed project plan proposal by November 24, 2020.

We invite you to view the NASA feature story announcing the 2021 Moon to Mars Ice & Prospecting Challenge: “Moon to Mars Ice and Prospecting Challenge Aims to Break Through More than Just Ice

If you have any questions, please contact the RASC-AL Program Team: