Mars

DEVELOPING A FLIGHT STRATEGY TO LAND HEAVIER VEHICLES ON MARS

The heaviest vehicle to successfully land on Mars is the Curiosity Rover at 1 metric ton, about 2,200 pounds. Sending more ambitious robotic missions to the surface of Mars, and eventually humans, will require landed payload masses in the 5- to 20-ton range. To do that, we need to figure out how to land more […]

BIG IDEA CHALLENGE 2019 FINALISTS TO DEVELOP PLANETARY GREENHOUSE CONCEPTS

No drive-through? No problem. University students are designing greenhouses so astronauts can grow their own food on Mars. NASA and the National Institute of Aerospace (NIA) selected five university teams to participate in the 2019 Breakthrough, Innovative and Game-changing (BIG) Idea Challenge. The challenge seeks to provide innovative ideas for the design, installation and sustainable […]

BOSCH PARTNERS WITH ASTROBOTIC TO STUDY DEEP AUDIO ANALYTICS ON THE INTERNATIONAL SPACE STATION

Bosch in North America and Astrobotic Technology Inc. have announced a research partnership to send experimental sensor technology to the International Space Station (ISS) as early as May 2019. Bosch’s SoundSee technology is a deep audio analytics capability that uses a custom array of microphones and machine learning to analyze information contained in emitted noises. […]

PLANT HORMONE MAKES SPACE FARMING A POSSIBILITY

With scarce nutrients and weak gravity, growing potatoes on the Moon or on other planets seems unimaginable. But the plant hormone strigolactone could make it possible, plant biologists from the University of Zurich have shown. The hormone supports the symbiosis between fungi and plant roots, thus encouraging plants’ growth – even under the challenging conditions […]

MARS VIRTUAL REALITY SOFTWARE WINS NASA AWARD

A mixed-reality software that allows scientists and engineers to virtually walk on Mars recently received NASA’s 2018 Software of the Year Award. OnSight uses imagery from NASA’s Curiosity rover to create an immersive 3D terrain model, allowing users to wander the actual dunes and valleys explored by the robot. The goal of the software, a […]

SOFTWARE FINDS THE BEST WAY TO STICK A MARS LANDING

Selecting a landing site for a rover headed to Mars is a lengthy process that normally involves large committees of scientists and engineers. These committees typically spend several years weighing a mission’s science objectives against a vehicle’s engineering constraints, to identify sites that are both scientifically interesting and safe to land on. For instance, a […]

NASA UNVEILS SUSTAINABLE CAMPAIGN TO RETURN TO MOON, ON TO MARS

In December of 2017, President Donald Trump signed Space Policy Directive-1, in which the president directed NASA “to lead an innovative and sustainable program of exploration with commercial and international partners to enable human expansion across the solar system and to bring back to Earth new knowledge and opportunities.” In answer to that bold call, […]

ORIGAMI OPENS UP SMART OPTIONS FOR ARCHITECTURE ON THE MOON AND MARS

Origami and high-performance textiles are transforming architecture plans for smart human habitats and research stations on the Moon and Mars. Initial field tests of the MoonMars project’s origami prototype were presented at the European Planetary Science Congress (EPSC) 2018 in Berlin by Dr. Anna Sitnikova. MoonMars is a collaboration between the International Lunar Exploration Working […]

SCANMARS DEMONSTRATES WATER DETECTION DEVICE FOR ASTRONAUTS ON MARS

Analogue astronauts have successfully trialed a radar that could help future Mars explorers identify where to dig for water. ScanMars is an Italian experiment that was used to identify subsurface water features in the Mars-like Dhofar region of Oman during the AMADEE-18 analogue mission in February 2018. The results were presented by Alessandro Frigeri of […]

BUZZ ALDRIN AND 8i PREMIERE “BUZZ ALDRIN: CYCLING PATHWAYS TO MARS” VR EXPERIENCE AT SXSW

Yesterday at SXSW, Buzz Aldrin and 8i with Time Inc’s LIFE VR, premiered the world’s first legacy VR project featuring the celebrated astronaut’s hologram as he takes viewers on a journey through space and reveals his plan to send humans to Mars. “Buzz Aldrin: CYCLING PATHWAYS TO MARS” is a groundbreaking educational room-scale VR experience […]

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