Instant Glider–Just add Light NASA Science

Tomorrow a high-altitude balloon will rise to the edge of space, bringing with it a small glider. Under the space-black sky 100,000 feet above Earth, the glider will sprout a pair of inflatable wings from its sides. Ultraviolet rays from the Sun will harden them to flight readiness. It’s a scenario that may someday be used to send a winged planetary explorer to Mars. If so, some of the more than 40 students at the University of Kentucky who have designed and developed this glider just might have a hand in making it happen.