The NIAC (NASA Innovative Advanced Concepts) program aims at turning science fiction into science fact through pioneering technology development. For that, NIAC has picked 12 concepts for future space travel and cosmic science.
NASA has revealed the selected proposals in Washington; these proposals cover a wide range of imaginative concepts like:
- A concept to safely capture a tumbling asteroid and a spacecraft that could travel from the sun to Neptune in a year.
- Developing ultra-high resolution giant disc that could boost the viewing power of space telescopes by up to a factor of 1,000.
- Sending a submarine to Titan’s largest northern sea, Kraken Mare.
- Titan Aerial Daughtercraft (TAD) weighting less than 10kg (22lbs), similar to Quadra-copter drones on Earth, to deploy on Titan by a balloon to acquire close-up high resolution images.
Each of these ideas will receive $100,000 (£60,000) of funding as NIAC Phase I awards to conduct a nine-month initial definition and analysis study of their concepts.
If the feasibility study during Phase I is successful, the project will be provided with £300,000 ($500,000) for two more years of concept development.
All the concepts chosen are really great, let’s wait and watch as it will take still many years to implement.