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  • Writer's pictureQuinn Morley

Borebots: Tetherless Deep Drilling into the Mars South Polar Layered Deposits

Updated: Dec 8, 2023

James Vaughan Photo
James Vaughan Photo

Deep drilling is one of the single-most important technologies of 21st century space exploration. From subsurface ocean exploration on Europa, to prospecting for water ice in the lunar permanently-shadowed regions, key secrets of the solar system are waiting for us to mature this crucial technology. This NIAC concept aims to drill deep into the South Polar Layered Deposits (SPLD) of Mars to search for life and liquid water beneath the polar ice. To do this, we’ve developed a novel approach to drilling which uses self-driving drilling robots called borebots. Each borebot drives up and down the borehole, performing drilling activities autonomously as part of a team.

2023 Mars Society Convention Slides:

Borebots Mars Society 23
Download PDF • 13.21MB

Mars Society Convention video coming soon, stay tuned!

NIAC Phase I Final Report (Revised 12/8/23):

BOREBOTS Phase I Report R1 508ed
Download PDF • 11.57MB

2021 Mars Society Convention Video Presentation (10/14/21):

2021 Mars Society Convention Slides:

Slides only (no notes):

Slides with notes:

Mars Society Convention Paper (11/10/21):

Borebots: Unlocking Subglacial Lake Access in the Mars South Polar Layered Deposits

Github repository (for release, license, and archival purposes):

This project has been in the public domain since 2018. Derivatives are encouraged.

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