"Bring me a shrubbery!" —Mars Curiosity Rover... probably.
Just because no life has been found on Mars, doesn't mean life couldn't survive there—right? That's the thought behind a proposed mission that would attempt to grow a plant on the Martian surface when the next rover lands there in 2021. Besides sprucing up the place, this could pave the way for long-term settlements.Read More
Noooo, rabbit! You have science to do up there!
Bad news for people who like space robots: China's first lunar rover, Yutu or "Jade Rabbit," experienced some kind of malfunction on Saturday and hasn't yet recovered. In fact, it's very likely that it will freeze over sometime in the next two weeks, thus ending its three month mission tragically early. We're very sad, guys.Read More
Curiosity Rover Basically Gets Its Learner’s Permit, Drives Itself With New Autonomous Navigation System
No one likes a backseat driver. Not even robots on Mars.
The Curiosity Rover tried out a new feature yesterday when it successfully tested out an automatic navigation system that let it decide for itself how to safely drive on Mars. Curiosity doesn't seem old enough to drive, but I guess it's ruled by Martian law at this point.Read More
In what is surely the best use of technology to date, NASA's Curiosity rover that happens to be performing serious science on the surface of Mars just checked in via Foursquare. This is obviously the best way to tell that it's actually on Mars, though we probably can't meet up for drinks. All snark aside, the rover's almost guaranteed to become the mayor in short order due to a dearth of competition. What perks this might entail aren't exactly known at the moment.Read More
Some scientists are looking at Mars exploration from a different angle, and have created two designs which can only be described as tumbleweed-based.
These spherical machines would be propelled by the carbon-dioxide breezes of Mars. While this method of locomotion lacks precise maneuverability, it makes up for it in speed, distance, and survivability.Read More