NASA Innovative Advanced Concepts (NIAC) Phase II Award Amount: $500,000
Lightweight Multifunctional Planetary Probe for Extreme Environment Exploration and Locomotion
Javid Bayandor State University Of New York, Buffalo
With many characteristics similar to Earth, Venus has long been considered of high scientific interest to NASA. The Venus surface temperatures near 460°C and pressures of 93 bar have made long duration surface missions infeasible.
NASA Innovative Advanced Concepts (NIAC) Program Phase I Award: Up to $125,000 for 9 Months
BREEZE- Bioinspired Ray for Extreme Environments and Zonal Exploration Javid Bayandor State University of New York
The Bio-inspired Ray for Extreme Environments and Zonal Exploration (BREEZE) combines inflatable structures with bio-inspired kinematics to create a highly efficient flier to explore the Venus atmosphere. This flier would take data while below the main cloud layer at approximately 50 km and re-charge using solar panels in the middle atmosphere at approximately 60+ km.
Tensioning cables would control the volume to allow the craft to rise and fall in the atmosphere. The bio-inspired kinematics will maximize flight efficiency while allowing a so-far unattained degree of control for a small inflatable flier in the upper atmosphere of Venus.