I have a suggestion for the next Mars mission with a rover. How about adding one of those remote control tiny helicopters with a camera? Of course you’d have to soup it up and modify it for the Martian atmosphere. But with a helicopter eye-in-the-sky you could get some amazing video and hugely increase the range of the rover. Yeah, there’s probably not much scientific value, but the PR value would be huge.
Right now we’re getting HD pictures of a hill. A hill that looks a lot like a zillion desert hills I grew up around near El Paso. You land a helicopter near that Mars canyon that could swallow a few Grand Canyons and now we’re talking prime time TV fly-by sponsored by Nike. NASA’s budget increases by leaps and bounds and before you know it rich folks are paying big money to remotely fly on Mars.
Oh, wait. NASA already thought of this.