NASA’s latest rover ‘Perseverance’ will be launching tonight at 9:50pm AEST (4:50am PDT), on an 8 month journey to Mars. The Rover will land on February 18, 2021 in Mars’ Jezero Crater.
The Perseverance rover will seek signs of ancient life in the crater that was once filled with water, and collect rock and soil samples for possible return to Earth. Instead of pulverizing rock the way Curiosity’s drill does, Perseverance’s drill will cut intact rock cores about the size of a piece of chalk and place them in sample tubes that it will store until the rover reaches an appropriate drop-off location for a future mission to bring home to Earth.
Perseverance’s Mission will last at least one Mars year (about 687 Earth days).
Hitching a ride with Perseverance is Ingenuity, a lightweight helicopter tech demo. It will be the first aircraft to attempt controlled flight on another planet.
Ingenuity’s test flight will be used to demonstrate technologies needed for flying in the Martian atmosphere. If successful, these technologies could assist in gaining a new perspective of Mars in the future; from above!
Watch the Launch here!
Disclaimer: Information from NASA. Vintage FM has not received any monetary benefit for posting this information.