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Astrobiology Top 10: Looking for Life on Mars -- in a Canadian Lake
Topic: Missions
Astrobiology Magazine is looking back over 2008, highlighting the top 10 astrobiology stories of the year. At number 6 is an expedition to Pavilion Lake in British Columbia. Researchers brought a pair of miniature submarines to the lake to find out if bacteria were involved in building some of the most unusual carbonate formations on Earth. (This story originally was published on September 08, 2008).

Jump Like a Grasshopper
Topic: Missions
A robot that can jump like a grasshopper and roll like a ball could play a key role in future space exploration. The robot can traverse complicated terrain and could be useful in studying planets like Mars.

Cliffbot Goes Climbing
Topic: Missions
From Astrobiology Magazine, European Edition is a story about a rover that can scale the steep sides of cliffs and craters. Developed by a group of NASA engineers, this three-rover system, modeled on tether-aided human climbing, could make such locations on Mars accessible for future exploration.

Mapping Planets, Moons and Asteroids
Topic: Missions
Researchers are using images of solar system bodies in different lighting conditions to produce high-resolution topographical maps of locations like asteroids. The maps could help in exploration and the search for life in the solar system.

Drilling Down to Alien Oceans
Topic: Missions
A new method of exploring thick icy sheets and what lies below them has been devised. Combining a drill and a melting tip, this probe is particularly useful for exploring icy locations such as the polar caps of Mars and Jupiter´s moon Europa.

Underwater Sentry
Topic: Missions
A new free-swimming robot has completed a 3.1-mile-deep trek beneath the ocean. The robot opens new possibilities for exploring the deep sea and discovering unique habitats for life.

Astrobiology Magazine, European Edition
Topic: Missions
Brimming with new interviews, stories and essays, the Summer 2008 issue of AMEE focuses on the Nordic community's contributions to astrobiology.

Exploring with SnoMotes
Topic: Missions
Unmanned, toy-sized snowmobiles recently navigated Alaska's frozen arctic outback. The new technology may one day help scientists study the affects of global climate change on melting ice in the arctic.

Resistant Transistors
Topic: Missions
Transistors made from a new kind of material are now being tested in space. The durable new technology could benefit long duration missions to planets like Mars and aid in completing science objectives like the search for signs of life in our solar system.

The Astrobiology Universe
Topic: Missions
The Astrobiology Science Conference, recently held in Santa Clara, California, was a complex universe teeming with topics and ideas. Although there were far too many interesting presentations to cover in full, this overview provides a few highlights.

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