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NASA testing an underwater alien-hunting robot

Scientists at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory are testing an early version of an underwater rover that could one day be used in the search for extraterrestrial life by exploring subsurface oceans on alien worlds. NASA’s BRUIE prototype. (Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech) Time magazine explains that this prototype, called the Buoyant Rover for Under-Ice Exploration (BRUIE), “is operated through satellite link and designed to cling onto the underside of ice with metal tires, transmitting measurements back to scientists and assessing whether the waters host other life-forms.” NASA astrobiologist Kevin Hand told National Geographic, “It’s the first time ever that an underwater, under-ice, untethered vehicle has been operated through satellite link.” A team of scientists recently tested BRUIE in frozen Alaska lakes. But, ultimately, scientists want to send the rover to an icy world like Jupiter’s moon Europa. More via Openminds.tv.

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