Get smart curated videos delivered to your inbox.   SUBSCRIBE
The Kid Should See This

Testing a Space Rover Under Alaskan Ice

Watch more with these video collections:

Someday it may be possible to explore below the icy surface of Jupiter’s sixth-closest moon, Europa, and if this happens, it could be done with a technological descendant of this robotic rover: NASA JPL’s Buoyant Rover for Under-Ice Exploration (BRUIE).

“Equipped with two wheels to roll along beneath the ice, this buoyant rover can take images and collect data on the important region where water and ice meet, what scientists call the ‘ice-water interface.'”

Watch this two-wheel floating vehicle drive on the underside of ice in Alaska’s Sukok Lake. From NASA astrobiologist Kevin Hand:

…We think this truly was the first time ever that an underwater, under ice, untethered vehicle has been operated through satellite link… Our work has this wonderful marriage of advancing our understanding of what’s happening on our own planet while simultaneously feeding forward into our exploration of potentially habitable worlds beyond Earth.

For that marriage, exploring Europa makes sense: there may be an ocean below the moon’s thick icy shell, and where there is water, there could be life.

space rover in Alaska
space rover under alaska ice
Learn more: Europa’s Underground Ocean Surfaces by Phil Plait, and this excellent corresponding report from National Geographic: The Hunt for Life Beyond Earth.

Related in TKSST’s video archives:
• The Top 5 Places to Look for Alien Life
• Testing NASA JPL’s Curiosity Scarecrow Rover
•  Brian Cox’s Favorite Wonder: Saturn’s moon Titan
• Fishing under ice in Lake Saarijärvi, Finland

This Webby award-winning video collection exists to help teachers, librarians, and families spark kid wonder and curiosity. TKSST features smarter, more meaningful content than what's usually served up by YouTube's algorithms, and amplifies the creators who make that content.

Curated, kid-friendly, independently-published. Support this mission by becoming a sustaining member today.

🌈 Watch these videos next...

Antarctica’s Ice Formations: Volcanic ice caves & undersea brinicles

Rion Nakaya

Why does a frozen lake sound like a Star Wars blaster?

Rion Nakaya

A bioluminescence expert catches a jumbo squid on camera for Blue Planet II

Rion Nakaya

Crackling ice stacking on the shore of Lake Superior

Rion Nakaya

Ice calving, Holgate Glacier at Kenai Fjords, Alaska

Rion Nakaya

For Sale: Spot by Boston Dynamics

Rion Nakaya

The 3-million-year old Ningwu ice cave never thaws

Rion Nakaya

The NASA-JPL engineers behind Mars InSight & MarCO

Rion Nakaya

Collared Pika Prepares For Winter in Wild Alaska

Rion Nakaya