NASA Conducts Successful Cruise Stage Testing Of Mars Rover Perseverance (Photo Credit: NASA)
NASA’s Mars rover 'Perseverance' has received a significant boost following the completion of important testing at the agency’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida. According to NASA, activities to measure mass properties of the Cruise Stage vehicle were performed successfully. Moreover, NASA’s Mars Helicopter, which will be attached to Perseverance, was tested successfully. It is to be noted that the Mars Helicopter will help Perseverance to reach the surface of the red planet.
NASA Mars Helicopter will be the first aircraft to fly on another planet. The twin-rotor, solar-powered helicopter will remain encapsulated after landing, deploying once mission managers determine an acceptable area to conduct test flights.
Importantly, NASA’s Mars rover 'Perseverance' will take the names of more than 1 crore people to the Red Planet. On March 5, 2020, NASA announced Perseverance as the new name for the Mars 2020 rover. The name ‘Perseverance’ was suggested by seventh-grader Alexander Mather, who submitted the winning entry to the agency’s "Name the Rover" essay contest, which received more than 28,000 entries from K-12 students from every US state and territory.
The Perseverance rover is a robotic scientist weighing just under 2,300 pounds (1,043 kilograms). It will search for signs of past microbial life, characterize Mars' climate and geology, collect samples for future return to Earth, and help pave the way for human exploration of the Red Planet.
JPL, a division of Caltech in Pasadena, is building and will manage operations of the Mars Perseverance rover for NASA. The agency's Launch Services Program, based at the agency's Kennedy Space Center in Florida, is responsible for launch management. The Mars 2020 project with its Perseverance rover is part of a larger program that includes missions to the Moon as a way to prepare for human exploration of the Red Planet. Charged with returning astronauts to the Moon by 2024, NASA will establish a sustained human presence on and around the Moon by 2028 through NASA's Artemis lunar exploration plans.
Mars 2020 alias Perseverance will be launched towards the red planet in July 2020. The rover will land in a crater called Jezero, about seven months (February 2021) after departing Earth. Jezero is an area on Mars where liquid water flowed once. Perseverance will use a suite of high-tech tools to scout for signs of ancient alien microbes. The robot will have a laser blaster to analyse interesting rocks from afar.
Perseverance weighs 2,314-pound (1,050-kilogram). The rover currently is at the agency's Kennedy Space Center in Florida. Kennedy is responsible for launch management. The rover is part of a larger exploration program that includes missions to the Moon to prepare for human missions to the Red Planet. Charged with returning astronauts to the Moon by 2024, NASA will establish a sustained human presence on and around the Moon by 2028 through NASA's Artemis program.