Space

US Perseverance Landed on Mars Last Year, Spacecraft From Three Countries

The US rover Perseverance successfully landed on Mars’ Jezero Crater as planned on the morning of 19th Japan time. This is the fifth Mars rover in the United States since 1997. In addition to exploring the possibility that life existed, it is expected that samples will be collected with a view to recovery to the earth. As for Mars spacecraft, Hope of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Tianwen-1 of China have also been successfully put into orbit this month, and all three aircraft that left the earth in July last year will be on Mars. Arrived safely.

Perseverance left Earth on July 30th last year. After sailing about 472 million kilometers, it entered the atmosphere of Mars on the morning of the 19th. After opening the parachute and lowering the altitude while slowing down, the aircraft continued to descend while being suspended by a crane equipped with a thrust reverser, and landed as planned. At around 5:55 am, when a successful landing was confirmed in the NASA control room in California, officials stood up and cheered, calling it 7 minutes of horror. He revealed the joy of surviving the landing work after entering the atmosphere.

Following the success, NASA Deputy Secretary Steve Jurczyk said, This landing is one of the most important moments for space exploration in the United States and the world, and we are at the forefront of discovery, so to speak, sharpening a pencil to rewrite a textbook. It embodied our spirit of enduring the most difficult situations, stimulating science and exploration, and moving forward.

The United States has continued to send rovers to Mars in 1997, starting with Sojourna, which weighs more than 10 kilograms. Perseverance is about 1 ton and was developed based on Curio City which has been in operation since 2012. It has six wheels and follows the basic structure of mounting a camera on support, while greatly improving the performance of the camera and analyzer.

Landed on the Jezero Crater, which was once a lake. In addition to exploring traces of the existence of life, we will proceed with geological surveys and experiments to produce oxygen from carbon dioxide, which is the main component of the atmosphere. We also plan to experiment with a helicopter, which will be the first aircraft on another planet. In collaboration with Europe, we are also considering taking a sample of Mars, storing it in a container, collecting it with another spacecraft in the future, and transporting it to the earth in the early 2030s.

Perseverance is the most sophisticated robot geologist to date, but it has a significant burden of proof in confirming that life once existed, said NASA Director of Planetary Sciences Lori Glaze. We can learn a lot, but to know if a sample once contained evidence of life, we’re likely to need a much more capable laboratory or equipment on Earth (than the equipment onboard an exploration vehicle).

Meanwhile, the UAE orbiter Hope, which departed the Earth with the Japanese H2A rocket, successfully put it into orbit on February 10. The first planetary probe in Arab countries. It orbits 20,000 to 43,000 kilometers above the sky, aiming for a detailed understanding of the atmosphere and climate using high-precision cameras and infrared and ultraviolet spectrometers. This year’s UAE 50th Anniversary Celebration, the training of scientists and engineers is also emphasized.

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