NASA 'dream fund' selects submarine for Saturn moon 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.
Wrk presented today at the Goldschmidt Geochemistry Conference in Sacramento, California shows that the timing of the giant impact between Earth's ancestor and a planet-sized body occurred around 40 million years after the start of solar system formation. This means that the final stage of Earth's formation is around 60 million years older than previously thought.