On February 18th, NASA’s March of Perseverance touched down on the Red Planet. Mankind could take another step in space exploration, and the obvious goal of the current mission is to find clues to life.
On February 18, NASA’s red probe called Mars 2020 will reach the red planet. This will transfer the perseverance rally, which will land around 22:00 HST. If the process is successful, a new chapter could begin the discovery of the red planet. Talk to NASA Chief Scientist Neil DeGrasse Tyson Jim Green about his latest rally and mission On StarTalk Radio.
There was actually a lot of traffic around Mars in February, right in front of NASA The United Arab Emirates And the Chinese spacecraft Just hit the red planet. The first question that may arise in humans is why more protesters should be sent to the planet, as Spirit and Opportunity in 2004 and the Curiosity Rover in 2012 successfully completed their mission. The answer to this question is simple, and so far protesters and other sources have provided a tremendous amount of information about Mars in recent years, raising new questions to be investigated immediately. In Newton’s words, not only earth scientists but also Martians stand on each other’s shoulders. Therefore, based on past experience, researchers can proceed.
Perseverance continues on earth tests. The name Mars means perseverance in the Hungarian language (Image: NASA)
As far as we know, there was an enormous amount of water on Mars 4 billion years ago, thus it was possible to even develop a habitable environment. The planet Mars is very diverse, as we already know from the experience of previous missions. In this new move, NASA targeted an area where ancient life was supposed to form. That’s why a 250-foot-deep crater called Jezero was chosen for the landing, as it used to be the mouth of a river delta.
The landing site at Jizero Crater, the photo clearly shows that it may once have been a river mouth here (Image: NASA)
While still considered the most dangerous part, the landing has evolved considerably compared to the previous missions. In the past, the arrival of protesters was still wet with airbags, and it was a descent rather than a descent. Spirit and Oppurtinity weighed under 200 pounds, while the tenacity was already a ton. This large crowd also made it necessary for Curiosity and present-day Mars to land on Mars, just as helicopters on Earth carry their load secured underneath with a rope. The persistent landing platform will fly over the hovercraft 20 meters above the rover.
Like a terrestrial cargo helicopter, the Mars Lander will land on the Red Planet (Image: NASA)
An important part of the current mission is laying the groundwork for future missions. Part of this is a helicopter delivered by perseverance. It may be the first device in human history to fly on an alien planet. The helicopter will be used to take pictures of large areas within the Martian atmosphere. The flying device has a small cube-shaped body and extremely large rotors, as engineers had to take into account the rare atmosphere of Mars when designing. If the technology proves successful, these flying machines will play a bigger role in upcoming missions.
This helicopter may be the first man-made device to fly on another planet (Image: NASA)
Microphones that record environmental sounds are also a new device on Mars missions. These add a whole new dimension to the existing sensors, and for the first time we’ll have the opportunity to hear the sounds of landscapes on Mars. Moreover, one of the microphones was already on during the landing, so we could also hear the landing sounds. The sounds recorded by the devices will also play an important role in Mars’ motion as perseverance moves on heavy Earth. After analysis, the stone cracks falling under the wheel will help to coordinate the device.
Of particular interest is that sounds recorded with microphones will not be as common on Earth as the rare influence of the Martian atmosphere on sound propagation. It would probably be a great experience to hear the sounds of another planet with our earthly ears for the first time.
The other sensors in persistence are amazing, too. Your main camera will provide images as if someone were looking around Mars. There will be additional high-resolution cameras at various points on the rover. With these, they can examine not only landscapes but also individual rock samples, thus helping in their selection. Moreover, there is a device on Mars that can spray rocks and determine their composition, this is a PIXL spectrometer.
Indeed, these vetted components lead to one of the mission’s most exciting questions:
Is there a chance to find the first evidence of extraterrestrial life?
Perseverance takes a rocky sample, has a chance to find traces of life (Image: NASA)
Searching for such strange traces of life would be interesting in how they found them if they were so different from Earth. Scientists say the most important thing in this case is not just searching for life like Earth. The extracted samples are now being prepared to be later returned to Earth for a more truly comprehensive investigation. These subsequent tasks are already planned.
„The main purpose of the mission is to examine the rocks to find evidence that Mars was previously habitable. We hope to find even traces of life“
“Jim Green, NASA’s chief scientist, is really optimistic.”
Sure, showing all the updated information you get about perseverance would be kind of time travel. Mars is about eight light minutes away from us, so the signals sent by Mars reach Earth in eight minutes. So when we start watching the most dangerous part of the mission, the seven-minute landing, on February 18th, it’s actually over. NASA will broadcast the landing “live”, so we will be excited with American researchers about whether humanity’s next big step in space exploration will be successful.
Cover photo: NASA