PETER MENZEL / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY PETER MENZEL / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Testing a Mars rover. Rough terrain testing of the 'Marsokhod', a Russian prototype of a rover vehicle intended for the Russian Mars 96 mission. Marsokhod weighs 75 kilos, and can carry a payload of 14.5 kilos. Its six wheels and jointed chassis allow it to negotiate the most difficult terrain. Steering is autonomous, computer controlled and guided by stereoscopic TV cameras for obstacle avoidance. Electrical power would come from a radioisotope thermoelectric generator (RTG), giving about 200 metres of travel per day over two years. This testing took place in Death Valley, California, in co-operation with The Planetary Society.
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