New Rocket Engine to Get Us to Mars with 20% Greater Efficiency

That's a picture of XCOR Aerospace's new liquid methane and liquid oxygen powered engine, a prototype of what could be launching future rockets to the Moon and Mars. The private space firm created the engine, which is about 20% more efficient than traditional hypergol engines that power trips today, with funding from NASA. This could very well be the way that future space missions get off the ground.

Also, it's pretty sweet looking, so there's that.

Private space firm tests futuristic rocket engine [New Scientist via Neatorama]