Is there Life on Jupiter's Moon Europa?
An ocean suspected to be under miles of ice gives science hope. But how could it be reached and explored? As part of the German Aerospace Center's (DLR) Explorer Initiatives, the Robotics Innovation Center of the German Research Center of Artificial Intelligence (DFKI) has been investigating this question since 2012 in the Europa Explorer project series. The focus is on the development of robotic systems that can penetrate the water, explore it autonomously and remain there for a longer period of time.
At the end of the third phase of the Europa Explorer project for long-range under-ice navigation (EurEx-LUNa) DFKI researchers are now conducting the final field trials in Abisko National Park in northern Sweden. Here they put the autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV) DeepLeng to the test in the frozen Lake Torneträsk to prove the feasibility of the concept for autonomous under-ice navigation. The project EurEx-LUNa is funded by the German Federal Ministry of Economics and Climate Protection (BMWK) via the German Aerospace Center (DLR).