NASA Developing Robotic Bees to Collect Samples, Map Mars Surface
NASA’s Mars rovers have gathered a lot of exciting data and photographs, but they’re moving at a snail’s pace. So how will it expedite that process? Robotic bees.
The space agency is developing bee-sized robots to map the surface of Mars and collect samples from the planet’s atmosphere. Scientists hope these insectoids will be more mobile and agile than traditional rovers.
The program, called “Marsbees,” is contracting researchers from the U.S. and Japan to build prototypes of winged robots, capable of swarming the red planet and collecting data, before returning to a rover to recharge.
One of the biggest obstacles engineers face is designing a robot that can fly in Mars’ unique climate. The red planet’s atmosphere can be pretty hostile with dust storms, low thermal inertia, and periodic ice ages. These bees will inevitably face some extreme weather conditions.
But there is one factor that may make the mission easier – Mars’ gravitational pull is about a third of Earth’s, which could prove to be more conducive to flight.
NASA’s website envisions the robots as roughly the size of a bee, but with larger, cicada-sized wings. Researchers imagine the bees will be capable of working independently or in teams to collect samples.
The program funding the project is called the NASA Innovative Advanced Concepts Program, or NIAC, which fosters science fiction concepts with the potential for realistic applications.
The aerial bots would primarily search for methane emissions from below the planet’s surface – an indication of subterranean Martian life. NASA’s Curiosity rover previously discovered low levels of the gas, encouraging scientists to explore further.
But the technology for this apian concept doesn’t have a lot of promising precedent. Several years ago, DARPA built a hummingbird-inspired drone, with a multi-million-dollar budget. Researchers engineered it to fly steadily, but the winged machine would likely struggle in the Martian environment.
Engineers working on the Marsbees prototype will test their robots in a vacuum chamber, with conditions to simulate the climate and air density on Mars. The group is receiving just $125,000 over the course of nine months to fund their prototype, before it will be tested for feasibility by NASA. If it passes preliminary tests, it will then be eligible for a second round of funding.
Secret Space Programs and Breakaway Civilizations
In July 2014, on the 45th anniversary of Apollo 11’s moon landing, the government declassified information about a secret space program from the 1950s called Project Horizon. The plan outlined the building of a permanent military base on the moon. Ten to twenty men would be sent with all their supplies and nuclear weapons. The secret moon base would be used for surveillance against and protection from the Soviet Union, and the men would have constant communication with the Earth.
The released documents show that the scientists knew it wasn’t possible to implement the plan, but it was expected to be put in place as technology advanced. Project Horizon never got off the ground. But, that isn’t the end nor the beginning of the story about secret space programs from the past, present and the future.
Secret Space Programs and FDR
In the 1940s, according to recently released documents, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt commissioned a secret space program. He was concerned about how to move large numbers of people in case of nuclear war to avoid massive radiation damage. He thought there might also be a need to escape the ravages of some other global cataclysmic event. Since there was no place on Earth to which large masses of people could be moved, he considered the possibility of moving to locations in space.
At first, moving to the nearest star, Alpha Centauri, seemed like an option. However, the distance made such a plan impossible. As a next step, FDR focused on the moon, Mars or Venus as alternatives to Earth.
Beginning in 1945 at the conclusion of WWII, after President Truman took over, he brought 1,500 German scientists and engineers to the U.S. The scientists, under Hitler’s leadership in Nazi Germany, made advancements in the development of flying saucers, like the Nazi Bell, before and during the war. The German scientists worked at Fort Bliss, near El Paso, Texas, and were assigned the task of developing secret space programs under the project name of Operation Paperclip.
Truman believed the Germans had knowledge of anti-gravity propulsion engines and other spacecraft flight technology. Werner von Braun was the most well-known member of this group, who eventually became the designer of the Saturn V launch vehicle, which was used to propel American astronauts to the moon. He eventually became the director of NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center and spoke out frequently about the need for space exploration.
Secret space programs are believed to be financed by secret “Black Budget” programs with contributions made by people with great wealth, private contractors and some government agencies. This secret funding keeps the programs from being subject to congressional oversight. Since the early 1960s, the programs have been kept secret even from the president: A memo was found in the newly released documents that said to keep “Lancer,” President Kennedy’s secret service nickname, out of the loop.
Secret Space Programs and Breakaway Civilizations
Secret space programs may have developed Breakaway Civilizations in outer space. Well-respected UFO and space researcher Richard Dolan, defines a Breakaway Civilization as a secret group of technologically advanced people who don’t share their knowledge with the rest of the world. These are essentially the Earth’s elite who have knowledge far above the rest of the world.
These elite may know of an upcoming imminent global geological cataclysm event and are building space bases as shelters for themselves. For example, they could be planning their escape from Nibiru Planet X, which “triggers comet showers” every 27 million years. One of those comets is expected to crash into the Earth and totally destroy it sometime in the not too distant future.
Scotland native, Gary McKinnon, hacked into thousands of government secret files. He found evidence of an anti-gravity propulsion system that traveled at incredible speeds. Also, he found evidence of portal technology that, when coupled with anti-gravity propulsion, would allow space travel to other stars and planets to be accomplished in a short amount of time.
It appears that Einstein’s theory that nothing can travel faster than the speed of light has been debunked. It also appears the Black Budget keeps these secrets even from NASA, since NASA apparently does not have access to anti-gravity technology. It still propels its rockets with fossil fuel.
McKinnon claims he saw nearly 300 photos of structures and civilizations existing on the back side of the moon. He says these structures (alien bases on the moon) are erased out of any photos when they are released to the public. Unfortunately, when he hacked into the computers, he was using a dial-up connection so he couldn’t download the photos. He says he took a screenshot of one that was saved on his computer, but his computer was seized when he was arrested. When his computer was subsequently returned to him, the photo was gone.
McKinnon also reported viewing a file that included names of “non-terrestrial officers” who he says were assigned to ships that weren’t U.S. Navy ships. He concluded these were the officers assigned to space ships, not navy ships, indicating that Breakaway Civilizations already exist.
There are many outstanding questions about secret space programs. Why do these programs remain secret? Will there be an opportunity for non-elite citizens to be part of a Breakaway Civilization? A poll taken in 2015 shows that 54 percent of Americans believe extraterrestrial intelligence exists. With such a large number of people supporting alien existence, why is there still a need to maintain secrecy?
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