Posted by tourdemars to Future Missions at November 21, 2010 9:36 PMBritish scientists have designed a Mars hopper that could explore the Red Planet's surface by leaping half a mile at a time. It would be able to travel 400 miles during a six year mission - far further than Nasa's intrepid Spirit Rover that managed to roll 15 miles over seven years. The innovative vehicle would move by sucking in carbon dioxide from Mars' atmosphere and compress it into fuel before blasting it out in much the same way as a rocket. It would take a week for the 63st vehicle to recharge. During this time it would carry out tests on Mars' physical and chemical surface and subsurface. Researchers from the University of Leicester unveiled their grand design in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society A.
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