The challenge, which began in 2015, has seen teams competing to design shelters suitable for the Moon, Mars and — optimistically — beyond.
For the fourth level of the third phase of the competition, 11 teams were asked to create full-scale renderings of their designs using modeling software, and short videos explaining their choices. Each model was evaluated for architectural layout and aesthetics, as well as the feasibility of their construction and scalability, among other traits.
Previous stages focused on architectural renderings and technologies required to build each design’s components.
New York-based Team SEArch+/Apis Cor won first place with their unique twisted structure, which comes dotted with small holes to let in natural light.
Runner-up Team Zoperhous suggested that their modular structures could be printed by an autonomous rover; and Mars Incubator, a group of engineers and artists, showed a modular design consisting of four distinct spaces, including one for growing plants.
The three teams split a prize of $100,000 between them.
In the next round, set for early May, the finalists will 3D-print scale models of their designs as they compete for $800,000 in prize money.
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