The EPFL Xplore student association at Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (Switzerland), has spent the previous year developing a rover to participate in the International Mars Rover Challenges. As a student association that focuses on Space Sciences and Exploration, multidisciplinary sciences and techniques meet under one roof towards the aim for actual space exploration and additions to the scientific world.

The Argos Project was the first one of this kind from EPFL Xplore, as the model began in September 2020 and had its first attempt at the European Rover Challenge in September 2021. With competition requirements such as collecting samples, object manipulations, retrieval and delivery apart from the task of traversing rough terrain combined with enviromental analysis, and the team managed to place in the top, makes us proud to be a partner through the support of a Cobolt 08-NLD 785 nm 120 mW. The Cobolt laser is part of a Raman spectroscopy set-up to help identify signs of life and water on Mars.

At the international ERC (European Rover Challenge) in Poland they managed to place 3rd in the overall competition out of 58 international participating teams. Apart from 3rd place, they also revieved 1st place in Science, as well as Probing. With student-designed mechanisms and algorithms, we are excited to see where we might find them in a few years time, possibly becoming a bridge between the academic enviroment and the scientific and technical industry of tomorrow.

Argos has proven that a team of dedicated students can go from nothing to having an operational exploration rover in less than a year.

– EPFL Xplore on the Argos Project

Well done!