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Tiny "smart" devices that can be borne on the wind like dust particles could be carried in space probes to explore other planets, UK engineers say.
The devices would consist of a computer chip covered by a plastic sheath that can change shape when a voltage is applied, enabling it to be steered.
Smart dust could be packed into the nose cones of planetary probes and then released into the atmospheres of planets, where they would be carried on the wind. For a planet like Mars, smart dust particles would each have to be the size of a grain of sand.