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Pictures | Tue Jul 4, 2017 | 5:30pm BST

Lunar robots put to test on Mount Etna

Scientists from German Aerospace Center are seen working as they test some robots on Mount Etna, Italy July 2, 2017. A robot wheels across a rocky, windswept landscape that looks like the surface of some distant planet from a science fiction film. But it is not in outer space, it's on the slopes of Europe's most active volcano.

REUTERS/Antonio Parrinello

Scientists from German Aerospace Center are seen working as they test some robots on Mount Etna, Italy July 2, 2017. A robot wheels across a rocky, windswept landscape that looks like the surface of some distant planet from a science fiction film....more

Scientists from German Aerospace Center are seen working as they test some robots on Mount Etna, Italy July 2, 2017. A robot wheels across a rocky, windswept landscape that looks like the surface of some distant planet from a science fiction film. But it is not in outer space, it's on the slopes of Europe's most active volcano. REUTERS/Antonio Parrinello
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A robot is seen on Mount Etna. Mount Etna, in Sicily, is a test bed for the approximately three-foot high, four-wheeled machine ahead of a future mission to the moon. It is being conducted by the German Aerospace Centre, the agency which runs Germany's space programme.

REUTERS/Antonio Parrinello

A robot is seen on Mount Etna. Mount Etna, in Sicily, is a test bed for the approximately three-foot high, four-wheeled machine ahead of a future mission to the moon. It is being conducted by the German Aerospace Centre, the agency which runs...more

A robot is seen on Mount Etna. Mount Etna, in Sicily, is a test bed for the approximately three-foot high, four-wheeled machine ahead of a future mission to the moon. It is being conducted by the German Aerospace Centre, the agency which runs Germany's space programme. REUTERS/Antonio Parrinello
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Scientists from German Aerospace Center are seen working as they test some robots on Mount Etna. The programme has enlisted experts from Germany, Britain, the United States and Italy to research ROBEX (Robotic Exploration of Extreme Environments) with the aim of improving robotic equipment that will be used in space.

REUTERS/Antonio Parrinello

Scientists from German Aerospace Center are seen working as they test some robots on Mount Etna. The programme has enlisted experts from Germany, Britain, the United States and Italy to research ROBEX (Robotic Exploration of Extreme Environments)...more

Scientists from German Aerospace Center are seen working as they test some robots on Mount Etna. The programme has enlisted experts from Germany, Britain, the United States and Italy to research ROBEX (Robotic Exploration of Extreme Environments) with the aim of improving robotic equipment that will be used in space. REUTERS/Antonio Parrinello
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A scientist from German Aerospace Center controls a robot on Mount Etna. "This is aimed at simulating a future, hypothetical landing mission on the moon or Mars and they use a lot of robots which are there to transport and install different instruments", said Boris Behncke, a volcanologist from the National Vulcanology Institute in Catania, near Mount Etna.

REUTERS/Antonio Parrinello

A scientist from German Aerospace Center controls a robot on Mount Etna. "This is aimed at simulating a future, hypothetical landing mission on the moon or Mars and they use a lot of robots which are there to transport and install different...more

A scientist from German Aerospace Center controls a robot on Mount Etna. "This is aimed at simulating a future, hypothetical landing mission on the moon or Mars and they use a lot of robots which are there to transport and install different instruments", said Boris Behncke, a volcanologist from the National Vulcanology Institute in Catania, near Mount Etna. REUTERS/Antonio Parrinello
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A scientist from German Aerospace Center is seen working as he tests robots. Scientists also hope to use the robots to explore the depths of Mount Etna and relay back useful technical data on seismic movement. The techniques learnt on Etna would then be deployed in lunar missions or in the exploration of Mars.

REUTERS/Antonio Parrinello

A scientist from German Aerospace Center is seen working as he tests robots. Scientists also hope to use the robots to explore the depths of Mount Etna and relay back useful technical data on seismic movement. The techniques learnt on Etna would then...more

A scientist from German Aerospace Center is seen working as he tests robots. Scientists also hope to use the robots to explore the depths of Mount Etna and relay back useful technical data on seismic movement. The techniques learnt on Etna would then be deployed in lunar missions or in the exploration of Mars. REUTERS/Antonio Parrinello
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Scientists from German Aerospace Center stand in front of a robot on Mount Etna. An initial robotic testing phase has nearly been completed on the Piano del Lago area of the volcano, a desolate stretch of terrain buffeted by strong winds.

REUTERS/Antonio Parrinello

Scientists from German Aerospace Center stand in front of a robot on Mount Etna. An initial robotic testing phase has nearly been completed on the Piano del Lago area of the volcano, a desolate stretch of terrain buffeted by strong...more

Scientists from German Aerospace Center stand in front of a robot on Mount Etna. An initial robotic testing phase has nearly been completed on the Piano del Lago area of the volcano, a desolate stretch of terrain buffeted by strong winds. REUTERS/Antonio Parrinello
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Scientists from German Aerospace Center are seen working as they test robots. Next, a network of equipment including rover robots and drones will be mounted to monitor seismic activity that closely simulates that which would be used on the moon.

REUTERS/Antonio Parrinello

Scientists from German Aerospace Center are seen working as they test robots. Next, a network of equipment including rover robots and drones will be mounted to monitor seismic activity that closely simulates that which would be used on the...more

Scientists from German Aerospace Center are seen working as they test robots. Next, a network of equipment including rover robots and drones will be mounted to monitor seismic activity that closely simulates that which would be used on the moon. REUTERS/Antonio Parrinello
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Scientists from German Aerospace Center are seen working as they test robots. REUTERS/Antonio Parrinello

Scientists from German Aerospace Center are seen working as they test robots. REUTERS/Antonio Parrinello

Scientists from German Aerospace Center are seen working as they test robots. REUTERS/Antonio Parrinello
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A robot is seen on Mount Etna. REUTERS/Antonio Parrinello

A robot is seen on Mount Etna. REUTERS/Antonio Parrinello

A robot is seen on Mount Etna. REUTERS/Antonio Parrinello
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Robots are seen on Mount Etna. REUTERS/Antonio Parrinello

Robots are seen on Mount Etna. REUTERS/Antonio Parrinello

Robots are seen on Mount Etna. REUTERS/Antonio Parrinello
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Scientists from German Aerospace Center are seen working as they test robots. REUTERS/Antonio Parrinello

Scientists from German Aerospace Center are seen working as they test robots. REUTERS/Antonio Parrinello

Scientists from German Aerospace Center are seen working as they test robots. REUTERS/Antonio Parrinello
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Robots are seen on Mount Etna. REUTERS/Antonio Parrinello

Robots are seen on Mount Etna. REUTERS/Antonio Parrinello

Robots are seen on Mount Etna. REUTERS/Antonio Parrinello
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