Out of this world: Martian rovers compete in Poland

Photo: European Rover Challenge/ Twitter

A total of 30 teams from 10 countries are currently competing in the European Rover Challenge (ERC), which started on Friday. The eighth edition of Europe’s largest robotics and space event combining competition of martian rovers with scientific and technological shows is taking place in Kielce, southeastern Poland.

The competition is being conducted in an on-site formula at the Kielce University of Technology as well as a remote formula for participants that could not make it to Poland. The remote ERC formula was first introduced during the COVID-19 pandemic. Teams competing remotely will connect to the Leo Rover, which will be controlled from their respective countries.

The event also includes lectures and workshops with experts providing information about Mars, manned missions to the Red Planet, the Moon and the commercialisation of the space sector.

“ERC is an integrated programme working towards technological developments, specifically those in GPS-denied environments, with space exploration and utilisation as the leading theme. The ultimate goal of the ERC is to become a standardised test trial and benchmark for planetary robotic activities, coupled with strong professional career development platform,” the official website of the competition stated.

The ERC Mars rover competition will continue until Sunday when the winners of this year's competition are set to be announced.