NASA Aims To Use Drones To Collect Soil Samples From Mars
How do you collect soil samples left on the surface of another planet by a traveling robot? That is the challenge NASA is currently facing. It is being considered to deploy several drones for this purpose, which in terms of design are derived from the Ingenuity Mars helicopter. The space agency explains this in a budget proposal.
The Mars Sample Return Mission
The Mars rover Perseverance has been roaming the surface of the red planet for a year and a half. The Mars mission is special for several reasons: not only did the Mars rover bring the first interplanetary drone, but the robot also takes soil samples at various locations to transfer them to Earth for further scientific analysis.
The only question is how best to collect these soil samples in a few years. Not only do the samples have to be launched from Mars towards Earth, they also have to be collected first. Perseverance has no storage on board and leaves the soil samples scattered on the Mars surface along the…