US space agency NASA is mulling over conducting a test for inflatable spacecraft technology for carrying its future missions to Mars.
According to the reports, the scientists at the American space agency are considering the use of a blow-up heat shield that looks similar to stacking ring of doughnuts that are often played by young children.
The American space agency is expected to begin with setting an aim to conduct an experiment on how inflatable technology can perform upon the re-entry into the atmosphere of our planet Earth.
The NASA researchers’ team is considering a lightweight as well as inflatable heat shield that could assist a future spacecraft slow down enough to enter the Martian atmosphere easily.
NASA scientists Neil Cheatwood, said, “We try to not use propulsion if we do not have to. We make use of that atmosphere as much as we can, because it means we don’t have to carry all that fuel with us.”
Cheatwood is a senior engineer for advanced entry, descent and landing systems at the NASA base in Langley, Virginia.
If sources are to be believed, NASA is expected to conduct the test in 2016.
The inflatables, which are created from a lightweight material, are filled with the nitrogen gas.
The scientists said that after the deployment of the spacecraft for landing, the rings would be placed on its top, making a clear resemblance to a giant mushroom.