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To Bee Or Not To Bee? Mars Is The Question

Mars

Ghana, in its small way, is fighting for recognition in the race for space and extraterrestrial capital.

Last year, we launched our first satellite into space. Though it is not going any further than revolving around this planet, we are now in the space

But NASA’s still leading in the space race.

NASA has two teams of researchers working to design a robotic bee that can fly on Mars.

The space agency announced the project on March 30. It’s in its early stages, but the idea is to replace modern rovers — which are slow, bulky and very expensive — with swarms of sensor-studded, fast-moving micro-bots that can cover much more ground at a relatively low cost.

Literally called Marsbees, the little bots are “flapping wing flyers of a bumblebee size with cicada-sized wings,” NASA officials wrote.

One reason this idea is at all feasible: Mars’ low gravity. The planet has just one-third of Earth’s gravitational pull, offering the Marsbees an advantage despite the thin atmosphere.

The Guardian reported that these “bees” will not only map the Martian terrain but also collect samples of the planet’s thin air, in hopes of finding methane gas — a possible sign of life. NASA’s Curiosity rover has detected low levels of the gas previously, Science reported, though whether it was biologically produced is unknown.

Marsbees are still in their very early stages, with a team at the University of Alabama, Huntsville working on numerical models and a Japanese team slated to design and test a micro-flapping-bot prototype.

Bees are already mankind alive with pollination and helping new trees to grow.

Now, Marsbees will also help study Mars for extraterrestrial life and the possibility of humans surviving on Mars.

Originally published on Live Science.

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