Posted by tourdemars to Technology at September 24, 2013 5:40 PMA UK team is developing its idea for a Mars "hopper" - a robot that can bound across the surface of the Red Planet. At the moment, landing missions use wheels to move around, but their progress can be stymied by sand-traps, steep slopes and boulder fields. A hopper would simply leap across these obstacles to the next safest, flat surface. The research group is led from Leicester University and the Astrium space company. They propose the use of a vehicle powered by a radioisotope thermal rocket engine.
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