Snake-Like NASA Robot Will Search For Extraterrestrial Life

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With each breakthrough of technology, the world becomes a more efficient place to live. These technologies help sustain our very way of life. At some point though – humans will need to look to other planets to live upon. The hope is, we find another option to go, so that humanity or what’s left of it lives on.

Scientists at NASA have come up with a rather clever solution of sorts. It imitates how serpents move on earth. This snake-like NASA robot will have capabilities unheard of. The problem with previous robots on the Moon for example is their limited ability to transverse across the surface. 

Illustration of the Exobiology Extant Life Surveyor (EELS) concept. NASA/JPL-CalTech 

This particular robot is an exobiology extant life surveyor otherwise known as (EELS). It is being developed by NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL). The robot will take exploration to an entirely new level and send back samples and data for further examination. 

It is thought that eventually this robot will reach what is known as Enceladus, which is the sixth-largest moon of Saturn (19th largest in the Solar System). English astronomer William Herschel discovered Enceladus back during 1789. It was named for one of the Greek mythology giants. What makes Enceladus interesting is that it’s covered by a fresh sheet of clean ice, which also makes it quite reflective. It also seems to have a salty ocean as well. 

Many of the scientists think this could be a destination one day for humans to explore. Enceladus was chosen for study for its liquid and chemical makeup. There is hope that some kind of extraterrestrial life will be found there. There is a possibility that this planet could be made as an outpost or place for a number of people to live upon. Of course this would also help with the origins of the universe and give us a better understanding of things.

Further studies show that Enceladus is about 500 km (310 miles) in diameter and does orbit Saturn in a near circular pathway. This is a distance of 238,020 km (147,899 miles). With more technology such as this robot, more planets will be easier to explore and get to. 

From what is understood, the snake-like robot will have the ability to explore holes, crevices and cracks across celestial type objects and planets within our solar system. Think of the possibilities such as sand surfaces, rock, water and ice. This robot will have the ability to both change and adapt on the fly to where it is upon the landscape. 

Of course rigorous testing will be conducted before such a device or robot will be launched out into space. Yet with great strides private industry has also emerged and has helped contribute to space type programs and independently proceeded with missions like these. Maybe one day it will reach Saturn’s moon, Enceladus or elsewhere. The possibility is astounding and exciting to think about. Who knows, maybe this robotic snake will help us meet some kind of extraterrestrial presence and even communicate with it somehow.

Source: interesting engineering

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