Astronauts aboard the International Space Station will get their shot this month at remotely piloting a lunar rover on Earth, according to NASA.

The test is the final step in an ongoing project to develop future remote rover piloting on both the moon and Mars by astronauts in orbit.

Currently, rovers are controlled by preprogrammed software that responds to commands sent from Earth by scientists, a process that involves lengthy delays.

Researchers are looking for a better scientific return on rover missions.

"This is a potential scientific scenario during future missions to the Moon and Mars," European Space Agency scientist William Carey, a principal investigator for the experiment, said in a NASA release.

"Space is such a harsh place for humans and machines.

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