Large Leaps in Small Tech Needed for Mission to Mars Small Times

Keeping the load light and cost low will be critical for any future mission to Mars, and researchers say the secrets lie in small tech. MEMS, microsystems and nanotechnology will help solve problems associated with heat, propulsion, communications and electronics – the biggest hitches to pulling off such a mission, say researchers, business leaders and officials with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). Although such a trip with astronauts remains at least 20 years away, small tech research and development play a large role in robotic and satellite missions to Mars, Earth’s orbit and other points in space – all of which paves the way for full-fledged spacecraft.