NASA proposes new solar powered airplane concept to explore Mars

US house company NASA has proposed to develop a brand new mobility Mars exploration platform that may use photo voltaic vitality to discover the Crimson Planet.

The Mars Aerial and Floor Clever Explorer (MAGGIE) is a compact fastened wing plane with ultra-high productiveness effectivity powered by photo voltaic vitality to fly within the Martian environment.

It should have vertical take-off/touchdown (VTOL) functionality, enabled by superior deflected slipstream know-how with CoFlow Jet (CFJ).

“MAGGIE would have the ability to carry out the primary global-scale atmospheric mission at Mars and revolutionise {our capability} of exploring nearly the whole thing of the Martian floor. It’s the first idea to allow ongoing exploration of this area of Mars and would offer a considerable leap in functionality for NASA’s exploration of the Crimson Planet,” the company stated in an announcement.

The attractiveness of airborne missions on Mars has been amply demonstrated by the Ingenuity helicopter, which landed on the Crimson Planet in February 2021 connected to the stomach of NASA’s Mars Perseverance rover.

Initially tasked with solely 5 take a look at flights to show its “pioneering” know-how, Ingenuity helicopter exceeded all expectations with 72nd flights on the Crimson Planet.

“MAGGIE could be equally participating to the general public, each in its audacity, and within the number of environments it may discover, research, and picture. The know-how would additionally improve VTOL plane know-how on Earth and different planets,” NASA stated.

The plane will have the ability to overcome the low density of the Martian environment with a magnitude larger than typical subsonic plane.

The vary of MAGGIE for a completely charged battery per 7.6 sol is 179 km at altitude of 1,000 m. The whole vary of MAGGIE per Martian 12 months is 16,048 km.

The consultant mission for MAGGIE introduced would conduct three atmospheric and geophysical investigations.

These embrace a research of the origin and timing of the Martian core dynamo from the weak magnetic fields discovered within the giant affect basins, a regional investigation of the supply of methane alerts detected by the Tunable Laser Spectrometer on the Mars Science Laboratory in Gale crater, and mapping of subsurface water ice at excessive decision within the mid-latitudes the place it has been noticed from orbit.

The conceptual MAGGIE system research signifies that the idea seems to be possible, however must be additional investigated, designed, and verified underneath Martian atmospheric situations in Section I, NASA stated.

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