Mars Rover Replica to be transported on the Interstate 95
Drivers on the Interstate 95 are in for a treat this summer as they will share the road with the Mars Rover Replica. The 5,500 pounds cargo will be traveling in a Peterbilt tractor trailer.
The Mars Rover concept vehicle is part of the Kennedy Space Center’s Summer of Mars Tour. The road tour will be along the east coast of the U.S. and its aim is to present the next generation of space exploration to the public.
Behind this concept is Shomotion – a specialized transportation company for touring artists, motion picture production and special events. The truck hauling the unusual cargo will be Peterbilt Model 386 with a Witzco Challenger removable gooseneck trailer.
The Mars Rover won’t travel to Mars but it will be on Display at the National Air & Space Museum in Washington, D.C., 21-23 July. After the exhibition in Washington, the rover will head to:
- Liberty Science Center in Jersey City, N.J., July 29-30
- Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum in New York, Aug. 3-6
- North Point Mall in Alpharetta, Ga., Aug. 12.
“The Mars rover concept vehicle is amazing, and to be a member of the team that is helping to bring a piece of the Mars experience to space fans is very exciting for our company,” said Michael Scherkenbach, president and founder of Shomotion. “We are proud to be collaborating with both Marketing Werks and the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex on this opportunity.”
The Rover replica was built by Parker Brothers Concepts and it is designed to handle the harshest conditions and terrain of Mars. It was developed with the help of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. The vehicle features carbon fiber accents, solar panels and 50-inch wheels specifically made for the Mars terrain.
However, due to the rover’s unique shape and size, transportation is a challenge. The 13-foot, 8-inch width of the vehicle requires specialized permits and vehicle escorts. This permits and requirements vary by state and it takes around a week to secure proper permits and routes. Once the permits are issued, the cargo needs to follow a predetermined route within strict operating hours.
According to Shomotion, driver has to have “acute attention to detail” due to the many moving components of the tour. The driver also has to maneuver the trailer through high-traffic areas.
But one of the major complications associated with this tour and the hauling of the Mars Rover Replica is that a lot of passing vehicles may try to take photograph of the rover while on the road.
So, to avoid any incidents, the advice is to make a trip this summer and to visit the predetermined tour viewing sites for the rover. In a meantime, in the next video, we can safely check the launch of the Mars Rover Replica.