The Astronaut Glove Challenge award will go to the team that can design and manufacture the best performing glove within competition parameters. The $250,000 purse will be awarded at a competition scheduled for November 2006, when competing teams test their glove designs against each other.

The basic idea was originally proposed last year on Rand Simberg’s Transterrestrial Musings blog to improve on current gloves, which have difficulties with remaining flexible while maintaining constant internal pressure in the vacuum of space. Previously-announced competitions include prizes for superstrong tethers, beaming power, and extracting oxygen from lunar regolith. These prizes are intended to lay the groundwork for larger competitions to further NASA’s Vision for Space Exploration, possibly including ‘an eight-figure prize for the first privately developed robotic moon lander.



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