Mmmm, Space Chips
Little spacecraft could hitch a ride on Earth’s magnetic field to search for alien life.
The next generation of robotic space explorers could be smaller than a dime—and cost about that much, too. Mason Peck, an engineer at Cornell University, envisions thousands of miniature spacecraft drifting to different planets, powered only by Earth’s magnetic field. Peck’s novel magnetic-propulsion method recently earned him a $75,000 grant from NASA’s Institute for Advanced Concepts to bring the idea closer to reality.
Source: Popular Science.