Home > Astronomy, Solar System, Spaceflight, Unmanned Spaceflight > Upgrade To Mars Rovers Could Aid Discovery On More Distant Worlds

Upgrade To Mars Rovers Could Aid Discovery On More Distant Worlds


Smart as the Mars Curiosity mission has been about landing and finding its own way on a distant world, the rover is pretty brainless when it comes to doing the science that it was sent 567 million kilometers to carry out. That has to change if future rover missions are to make discoveries further out in the solar system, scientists say.

The change has now begun with the development of a new camera that can do more than just take pictures of alien rocks – it also thinks about what the pictures signify so the rover can decide on its own whether to keep exploring a particular site, or move on.

“We currently have a micromanaging approach to space exploration,” said senior researcher Kiri Wagstaff, a computer scientist and geologist at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in Pasadena, Calif. “While this suffices for our rovers on Mars, it works less and less well the further you get from the Earth. If you want to get ambitious and go to Europa and asteroids and comets, you need more and more autonomy to even make that feasible.”

Full Story: http://www.agu.org/news/press/pr_archives/2013/2013-43.shtml

  1. sdrpullen
    September 10, 2013 at 1:05 am

    Reblogged this on A Blog About…..

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