windbot_v3_warm_2000Due to the fact that the different planets in our solar system consists of different environments, there really isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution when it comes to creating robots to explore the different planets, which is why NASA is currently contemplating the idea of how would one go about exploring a planet like Jupiter which is mainly consists of gas.

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One possible idea that NASA came up with involves the creation of a windbot. Basically this is a robot designed to remain afloat on a planet such as Jupiter without the need for wings or a setup similar to a hot-air balloon. Of course this is just a concept at the moment, but it is a potentially viable one that NASA will be exploring to see how it will stay afloat while at the same time harvesting energy to keep it powered.

NASA cites an example of how one time back in 1995, they dropped off a probe that descended into Jupiter via parachute, but only managed to survive for about an hour before it succumbed to the high temperatures and pressure, which is why a robot like a windbot that could keep itself afloat would be more viable in terms of survivability.

That being said there are currently no missions scheduled that would take advantage of windbots, but NASA points out that it is possible to use such a concept even back on Earth, where windbots could be used to help scientists understand turbulent weather like hurricanes.

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