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A Pink Rover Tackles the Red Planet, Barriers for Women in Science

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Members of the Monash University rover team pose alongside Waratah, named after an endemic Australian flower.

Chloe Chang said she and her teammates designed the pink rover in part to prompt conversations about women in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM).

Credit: Amanda Heidt

A team of engineers from Australia's Monash University placed second in the University Rover Challenge in Hanksville, UT, with a pink-colored robotic rover that navigated desert terrain mimicking the surface of Mars.

The Monash Nova Rover team, which is more than half female, aimed to address the competition's under-representation of women.

Monash's Chloe Chang said the team designed the Waratah rover to spur discussions about women in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM), and robotics is particular.

Said Chang, "Robotics is fundamentally creative, and we want to be accessing a greater pool of creative thinking and ideas to ultimately find the best solutions to engineering problems. Seeing more women coming into leadership and having that visibility definitely helps."

From Nature
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Abstracts Copyright © 2023 SmithBucklin, Washington, D.C., USA


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