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NASA Moonbuggy Race - Press

Dear friends of the NASA Roverchallenge,


we have opened the gate of the NASA Moonbuggy Race for international teams in 2007 together with Prof. Dr. Jesco von Puttkamer. At that time, the International Space Station ISS was still very young. Puttkamer was its director. Since then, it has shown that international cooperation is very important.

NASA and NASA Headquarters recognized this, and therefore NASA competitions were opened to international teams since 2008 under the condition of cost neutrality. We are proud to have facilitated this development, proud that more than 100 teams have walked this path with us to date. Proud to have found a basis of cooperation and friendly competition with you and also US teams. Because the future only works together. Since then, the NASA Roverchallenge has been a guarantor for honesty, transparency and fairness for 10 years. We were the point of contact and trail blazer for every new international team and enriched the race with 2 new awards (International Team, Telemetry). NASA awarded us for this in 2017. Thank you

In this decade we are going to the moon again and it is our generation that will realize it. That is why international cooperation and collaboration has become even more important, also to defend our democratic freedoms against climate change, right-wing populism and war.


Unfortunately, however, since 2017, HERC's new leadership has been unilaterally limiting precisely this cooperation, penalizing international teams and cooperation with U.S. teams. Also, the best international teams are rejected without transparent reasons without the possibility of a proper appeal with justification. This is what happened to our team since 2021. In the last decade we have achieved 3 first places, 4 other podium finishes and all other awards. We have and strive after the NASA Core Values to also be Trailblazer for teams from 30 other countries. We are happy to be on the road with you.


This refusal to compete is arbitrary and damages honest competition. Many of you can not explain why this is so. We have taken the trouble to refute all reasons for rejection of the jury on the basis of our proposal. Actually, you can't take such a jury seriously anymore. It works anything but scientifically.

We have the opinion that such an action is not sustainable, it is even a crime against the future of all of us. Our space agencies and companies are working together on the SLS program, the Gateway and interstellar missions. How is this cooperation supposed to work when already we, the younger generation, are not allowed to do so. We have even more problems to solve in climate change than in space exploration. That's why we were invited by NASA Headquarters to be VIP guests at the first launch back to the moon. As you can see, the NASA Rover Challenge is not just NASA.

Many international teams are afraid of repression (rejection, discrimination) by the current management of NASA Roverchallenge and its set of rules, which no longer comply with the international principles of education and promotion of young scientists. We know that this is not the implementation of the NASA core values, but a regional arbitrariness by an organizer who disregards the rules of international cooperation and transparency.

Therefore, together with influential friends from the space community, we are now addressing NASA and also other space agencies on our planet with the goal of achieving a sustainable foundation of international collaboration, networking, promotion and cooperation for our generation. It will definitely turn into something big.

If you would like to participate with your team, please read the attached letter to the US Consul General and let us know if you would like to participate. We are planning an international competition that is better.

We want to move the future.  We are going!


denial: 2023-herc.pdf
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