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Unmanned > Mars & Missions > Past and Future
You may have seen these before, but here are a few Marsokhod rover designed developed and tested by TransMASH. First is a concept developed for a Mars-94 mission. Note the radioisotope thermopile generator on the back.

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They also experimented with walking rovers, and with hybrid concepts that included wheels on articulated axles:

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In 1999, TransMASH worked with NASA on a Mars rover, a blend of Marsokhod and some American concepts clearly. Looks similar to the ExoMars rover, I think.

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"Pele" -- one of the proposals for the first Discovery AO, proposed by G. Jeffrey Taylor of the U. of Hawaii -- would have landed a Marsokhod on the Moon to check out the relatively recent volcanic terrain at Aristarchus.
Here's a Marsokhod for you - from the 2002 cover of the Russian Popular Mechanics:

Now that's how you land on a planet! None of these wussy beach balls bouncing

QUOTE (ljk4-1 @ Jun 3 2006, 09:36 PM) *
Now that's how you land on a planet! None of these wussy beach balls bouncing around!

The cultural references are all wrong but when I saw that the cry "Yeeehaaaw!" just seemed so appropriate - a landing like that would really be staking a frontier claim. smile.gif
Actually, one of the selling points for Marsokhod was always that you could land it using airbags, because its design enabled it to be curled up like a millipede. (That same active body flexibility, using motorized joints between its body sections, would have been used to give it much greater ability to clamber over obstacles.)

I've always regretted that the Russians ran out of cash before they could do anything with this design -- if and when they get back into the space exploration biz, I still think that the Marsokhod design may end up being useful.
I'm sorry for digging up this old thread, but I have to say something about Russian rover attempts.

The Russians were first in putting a rover on Mars. Indeed, Mars 3 carried a small rover, named PROP-M. It was designed to communicate directly with the lander with a simple cable. And it was not a wheeled rover, it had a skiing system.
The rest you know - the lander failed 20 seconds after landing and the rover couldn't achieve its goals.
As old as Voyager
You're right of course. It was a brilliantly ambitious piece of kit:

I suppose its too much to hope that future HiRISE images will show the little rover (or should that be skier) a few meters from the lander much like Sojourner and Pathfinder.

If the Mars 3 rover did make it onto the surface, presumably it would have reached the end of its tether. Much like the Soviet scientists in Mars program at the time when both their potentially brilliant landers failed.
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