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News Link • Space Travel and Exploration

NASA 'dream fund' selects submarine for Saturn moon

• newscientist.com

A robot submarine for exploring the methane oceans of Saturn's giant moon, Titan, a greenhouse on Mars and a spacecraft that hitches rides on comets to the outer solar system are just three of the far-out ideas NASA is backing in its latest round of funding for the distant future of space exploration.

Each year NASA's Innovative Advanced Concepts (NIAC) programme asks researchers to submit ideas for space technology that could prove useful in the next few decades. Last year selections included two-dimensional spacecraft and suspended animation.

This time NIAC has chosen 12 projects, each of which will receive $100,000 for a nine-month study, with the possibility of another $500,000 for further research if the idea checks out.

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