The ATHLETE Moon Rover From NASA (+VIDEO)
NASA engineers have designed a lunar rover to handle well on any terrain, whether crater, dusty or rocky. This heavy-duty space truck is planned to be used for transporting gear while building and supplying a lunar base. ATHLETE (All-Terrain Hex-Limbed Extra-Terrestrial Explorer) features six bendable spider legs to step over obstacles and wheeled feet to roll on smooth surfaces. ATHLETE divides into two identical, three-legged rovers, called Tri-ATHLETEs, made to haul specially designed shipping containers. NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory has recently presented the $2 million half-size prototype and the actual, 26-foot-tall rover will start working in space by 2017. You can find the detailed description of the ATHLETE moon rover at popsci.com.