The ORBIT 1 rover was designed to be a robust, high volume robotic miner for the NASA Robotic Mining Competition. It employed an adjustable, central excavation drum, mounted on a carbon fiber frame, and can reach a theoretical mining rate of 2kg of BP-1 (Martian Regolith Simulant) per minute.
The concept of the effectiveness of a "digging wheel" has been proved by the previous Atlas series miners. The primary concept behind ORBIT 1's design is using a high torque, high speed central wheel to excavate and store collected regolith. The original intention behind the design of ORBIT 1 was the use of a dual rover system, where the ORBIT 1 rover would serve solely for excavation, while a secondary rover would transport excavated regolith from the mining site to the deposition type, hence the small carrying capacity of the rover (10kg).
ORBIT 1 proved an effective excavater during the 2018 NASA Robotic Mining Competition; however, it failed during the deposition portion of its run due to a mechanical failure in the deposition mechanism. Nevertheless, ORBIT 1 proves the strengths of a "mining wheel" compared to other, traditional mining mechanisms.