NASA has successfully landed four rovers on Mars, all without any astronauts driving it. While plans for the journey to the Red Planet seem quite far, NASA decided to create a concept that shows what a manned Mars Rover would look like.
Unveiled at the Kennedy Space Center, the concept is made to effortlessly roam terrains out of this planet. What's special about the vehicle is the ability for it to separate in the middle, with the front part serving as a navigator and scouter for the area. In the rear, experiments and research can be conducted to find out any information regarding past life or the presence of water and oxygen. It can also bring back core samples to Earth for further studying.
The Mars Rover is rather big, with a weigh of 6000 pounds. It looks like it came straight out of a futuristic video game, and drives on what could possible be the biggest wheels I have ever seen. Measuring at 50 inches of height, the massive wheels are made to carry this mobile laboratory on Mars. The NASA Mars Rover Concept Vehicle is powered by an electric motor and charges from solar panels feeding a 700-volt battery.
While this Mars Rover won't make it to Mars itself, some of the parts and technology used in this concept are going to make it to the final prototype. NASA certainly isn't undermining the importance of studying the Red Planet. This concept also served as a way to attract young people into learning more about space.