NASA's Mars Perseverance Rover Lands Safely On Red Planet
Global Aviator|March 2021
The largest, most advanced rover NASA has sent to another world touched down on Mars. Packed with groundbreaking technology, the Mars 2020 mission launched 30 July 2020, from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida. The Perseverance rover mission marks an ambitious first step in the effort to collect Mars samples and return them to Earth.

About the size of a car, the 1 026-kilogram robotic geologist and astrobiologist will undergo several weeks of testing before it begins its two-year science investigation of Mars’ Jezero Crater. While the rover will investigate the rock and sediment of Jezero’s ancient lakebed and river delta to characterise the region’s geology and past climate, it will also search for signs of ancient microbial life. The Mars Sample Return campaign will allow scientists on Earth to study samples collected by Perseverance to search for definitive signs of past life using instruments too large and complex to send to the Red Planet.

“Perseverance is the first step in bringing back rock and regolith from Mars. We don’t know what these pristine samples from Mars will tell us. But what they could tell us is monumental – including that life might have once existed beyond Earth,” says Thomas Zurbuchen, associate administrator for science at NASA.

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