NASA Launching Perseverance In Search Of Martians

Pablo Tucker
July 31, 2020

This isn't the only Mars mission heading to the Red Planet as of this month.

The Mars 2020 mission, also known as the launching of NASA's Perseverance Rover onto the surface of the Red Planet will be taking place today.

In the launch of the Perseverance mission, the Philippines ranked 23rd with 69,995 submitted names.

I'm exceptionally excited about what we're about to do because we're going to launch Mars 2020 with the Perseverance robot.

The Perseverance mission has a lander and a rover but will also include a helicopter (Ingenuity) for the first time.

"The rover will collect and store a set of rock and soil samples that could be returned to Earth by future Mars sample return missions". Ingenuity's high-risk, high-reward flight plans, as well as a planned Martian sample return mission, each represent firsts of their kind.

"This podcast gives the inside scoop from the Los Alamos Planetary Exploration Team on the eve of the historic Perseverance trip to Mars", says Roger Wiens, lead scientist for SuperCam-one of the advanced instruments aboard the rover-at Los Alamos National Laboratory. Following a seven-month journey, it will land at Jezero Crater on February 18, 2021, and will gather rock and soil samples for a future return to Earth.

As to how Perseverance will help pave the way for astronauts in the future Mars missions, it is because it will test a process that will create oxygen from carbon dioxide. Turkey led the list with 2,528,844 signups out of almost 11 million. The sample will then be sent back to Earth and this will be part of a future mission, in a few years. Perseverance is to go a step farther and will be looking for signs of past life in a crater named Jezero that was once a lake, some 3.5 billion years ago.

Should everything go according to plan, Perseverance will touch down at the 28 mile wide (45 kilometers) Jezero Crater on February 18th, 2021.

The Mars 2020 launch, scheduled to occur at the opening of a 2 hour window beginning at 7:50 a.m. EDT from Space Launch Complex 41, is now forecast to enjoy an 80% chance of "go" for weather conditions.

On July 28, United Launch Alliance rolled the stacked Atlas V "Mars 2020" rocket out to Launch Complex 41, in advance of an anticipated launch on Thursday, July 30, 2020.

Matt Haskell is a published aviation and spaceflight photographer and writer based in Merritt Island Florida.

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