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NASA Moonbuggy Race - NASA Moonbuggy Race 2010
Leipzig, April 28th, 2010


The award ceremony for the winners of this year's NASA Moonbuggy Race will take place on May 8th and welcome participants, partners and associates.

The itinerary on the day includes events of the professional and undergraduate orientation days with over 150 enterprises, a presentation at Radio Energy Saxonia and ends with an award ceremony with buffet dinner, speeches, a screening of the IMAX movie "Walking on the Moon" and music for invited guests. A VIP tour will introduce the historical roots of spaceflight by the former MSFC-Director Eberhard Rees, aviation and seafaring visionaries in Leipzig the following day. Employees of the german space agency want to take part in this event.

Each invited guest, company or association as supporter for the Moonbuggy Project will receive a personal award of the Winning Team 2010, made by the center for technology and handicraft of the chamber for trade in Leipzig, designed by the students of the International  Space Education Institute Leipzig.

Main and GOLD sponsors will receive an invitation for the Space Shuttle launch at Cape Canaveral.


The up-and-coming construction team of the International Space Education Institute of Leipzig was the first international team to participate in the NASA competition in 2007 and promptly won the Rookie-Award. Since then, 10 international awards have followed. In the mean time, 52 additional international teams have joined the German students in the rocket city of Huntsville, Alabama. They let a cumulative budget of EUR 250.000 in the rocket city USA.

On April 10th, the now multinational team of Leipzig (Germany, Russia, USA) came first in an overall group of more than 100 registered teams. For the first time the title of world champion was presented to a team outside the US.

The vehicle, built by saxonian and bavarian grammar school students, and optimized by students of the Moscow Aviation Institute (MAI) and Leipzig-based apprentices at the Vocational Technology Centre (BTZ) of the Chamber of Trade, is powered entirely through muscle. Chief designer Thommy Knabe (19) completed it for sciencepropaedeutic papers of his school leaving exams. The team was trained by the sport school student and professional cyclist Max Frank (17).

Both, Moonbuggy and team, impressed us as an integrated unit with the following data with regards to construction, craft and athletic achievement:

  • speed during a test run: 80 km/h (50 MPH)
    maximum acceleration on the course: 1.1 G
    maximum load on pitched plane: 3 tonnes
    time (final score 1,200 m course, 17 obstacles): 3:31
    race readiness from folded vehicle: 6 seconds
    maximum torque on the front axle on the course: 255 lbf-ft
    solar-powered real time telemetry analysed with software of own design

In addition to this, the dismantled vehicle had to withstand the complicated logistics of trans-Atlantic flight, which this year was affected by the flight ban following the volcanic ash cloud. At one point in time, the 400 constituent components were located in five different places on the globe. Today (April 28th) the last case arrived at Leipzig. Finally, all pieces are at home now.


9am -1pm:
Open Day: Apprenticeships with
150 middle business companies, live local radio stage, press, Moonbuggy team as champion
Partners: chamber of commerce, camber of handicraft, Leipzig mayor’s office

from 2pm:
Check In, Space Hostel Leipzig

Coffee and tour around the recently acquired school premises of SEI

from 6pm:
Award Ceremony: NASA Moonbuggy Race Winners

  • Introduction by a VIP of the german space agency and the Chamber of handicraft, Leipzig
  • Presentation of the NASA participants from Huntsville
  • Buffet dinner (made by students for catering)
  • Screening of the most impressive pieces of racing footage from Huntsville
  • Presentation of the awards to stakeholding enterprises and individuals
  • Panel, bar, open air bar, Moonbuggy night drives
  • Screening of the IMAX movie "Walking on the Moon" with Tom Hanks

next morning:

  • breakfast/ brunch
    VIP tour through Leipzig
    visit to sights of the 200 year history of aviation and astronautics in Leipzig
    tours through SEI premises, their observatory, their partners at companies and associations

Invited guests:

  • members, students and councelors of the International Space Education Institute (registered association)
    Bruno Banani (Chemnitz | Sachsen)
    Rohloff AG (Fuldatal | Hessen)
    Mädler GmbH (Stuttgart | Baden-Württemberg)
    Dreherei Guenter Jakob GmbH & Co. KG (Leipzig | Sachsen)
    DEKRA Automobil GmbH, Niederlassung Leipzig (Leipzig | Sachsen)
    Hase Spezialräder (Waltrop | Nordrhein-Westfalen)
    "Magura" GUSTAV MAGENWIRTH GmbH & Co. KG (Bad Urach | Baden-Württemberg)
    Schwalbe - Ralf Bohle GmbH (Reichshof | Nordrhein-Westfalen)
    Heiterblick / LEOLINER Fahrzeugbau GmbH (Leipzig | Sachsen)
    Alan Electronics GmbH (Lütjensee | Schleswig-Holstein)
    HinzTec (Hennigsdorf | Brandenburg)
    IGUS GmbH (Köln | Nordrhein-Westfalen)
    Althaus Galvanik- und Pulverbeschichtungs GmbH (Leipzig | Sachsen)
    Hexion Specialty Chemicals GmbH (Iserlohn | Nordrhein-Westfalen)
    W&S Metallbau (Reichenbach | Sachsen)
    Metallbearbeitung Aischmann (Leipzig | Sachsen)
    P.J. Prause Durotec GmbH (Arnsberg | Nordrhein-Westfalen)
    R&G Faserverbundwerkstoffe GmbH (Waldenbuch | Baden-Württemberg)
    Singlespeedshop (Hannover | Niedersachsen)
    Vogelsang Edelstähle (Hagen | Nordrhein-Westfalen)
    Schlumpf Innovations GmbH (Vilters | Schweiz)
    Wittenbecher Maschinenbau GmbH (Leipzig | Sachsen)
    DEKRA Automobil GmbH (Leipzig | Sachsen)
    Martini-Service (München | Bayern)
    Board of the Chamber for handicraft (Leipzig | Sachsen)
    Board of the Center for Technology (Borsdorf | Sachsen)
    Professors of the Moscow Aviation Institute (Moskau | Russland)
    Councelors of the bord of the German Space Agency

Thanks to:

  • Yvonne Heckel, international ambassador for space education (Leipzig | Germany)
    Prof. Dr. Jesco von Puttkamer NASA-HQ (Washington | USA)
    Prof. Dr. Harry O. Ruppe (professor of space systems, TU-München (Munich | Bavaria)
    Prof. Dr. Natalia Korolev (daughter of Sputnik designer Sergei Korolev) (Moscow, Russia)
    Eng. Terry Wall (Marshall Space Flight Center) (Huntsville | USA)
    Vernon and Kay Headrick (Huntsville | USA)
    Prof. Dr. Eng. Evgeniy Demin (Mars 500, IMBP) (Moscow, Russia)
    Prof. Dr. Eng. Anatoly Zotov (cosmic apparates) (Moscow, Russia)
    Prof. Dr. Vladimir Malozemov (life support systems) (Moscow, Russia)
    and many more private supporters

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