A Real Engineering Story – Engineering Wheels for Mars

Mission name: Mars Science Laboratory

Vehicle name: Curiosity rover

Problem: Wheels wearing out on sharp rocks of Mars

Solving this problem: Watch this lecture at Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) given recently.


About Kenneth Richard Hardman

AncestorClips are very short stories about very real people. Each clip nurtures awareness of a time, a place, and the character of a man or woman who cultivated a path for our life. The reader feels the good, the obstacles, the happiness, the sadness, and the overcoming. They cheer us, make us resilient when challenged, give us purpose, and connect us to our multi-generational family. Each story is followed by reflections from the author and readers sharing how the story strengthened or inspired them. Ken Hardman is a son, a brother, a grandson, a great-grandson… He is also a husband, father and grand-father. Ken is a professional engineer, engineering mentor, technical writer, and associate technical fellow at a major aerospace company. He is a writer of engineering and family history stories. Please join Ken in reading, reflecting upon, or writing #AncestorClips
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3 Responses to A Real Engineering Story – Engineering Wheels for Mars

  1. bmhardman says:

    I also found it interesting to hear about the process of collecting the various parts through “contests” or bids. I imagine it helps promote very quality pieces. So much collaboration must take place then, to have all the pieces work together harmoniously!

  2. This lecture helps to emphasize how many people, scientist, engineers, and others, are involved in a complex mission like this. I think it is a wonderful demonstration of great engineering.

  3. Bob Riddle says:

    Several years ago as a teacher attending a workshop at JPL we visited the Mars In Situ lab where they were testing wheel design for the twin rovers now on Mars. I often wonder how many people consider all the pieces that come together for a mission like this, even something as innocuous as the wheels.

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