Mission Mars 2020: The Atlas V rocket carrying NASA Perseverance rover successfully lift off today at 8:22 AM EDT (5:22 PM IST) on around 7 month long journey to Red Planet.
The Perseverance rover is planned to make the landing at Jezero Crater landing site on mars on 18 Feb 2021.
The prime objective of Perseverance rover to seek signs of ancient life and collect rock and soil samples for possible return to Earth.
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NASA spent more than $2.4 billion to design, build and prepare the Mars 2020 mission for launch and after landing the total cost is expected around $2.7 billion.
NASA Mars 2020 Mission
The Mars 2020 mission addresses high-priority science goals for Mars exploration, including key Astrobiology questions about the potential for life on Mars.
The mission takes the next step by not only seeking signs of habitable conditions on Mars in the ancient past, but also searching for signs of past microbial life itself.
With this mission NASA send a technology demonstrator, “Mars Helicopter“. A demonstration to test the first powered flight on Mars. The helicopter will ride to Mars attached to the belly of the Perseverance rover.
The Perseverance rover introduces a drill that can collect core samples of the most promising rocks and soils and set them aside in a “cache” on the surface of Mars.
A future mission could potentially return these samples to Earth. That would help scientists study the samples in laboratories with special room-sized equipment that would be too large to take to Mars.
The mission also provides opportunities to gather knowledge and demonstrate technologies that address the challenges of future human expeditions to Mars.
To keep mission costs and risks as low as possible, the Mars 2020 design is based on NASA’s successful Mars Science Laboratory mission architecture, including its Curiosity rover and proven landing system
23 Years ago, in 1997 NASA sends its first Sojourner rover on Mars soil under Mars Pathfinder mission. In 2003 NASA send the twin rovers, Spirit and Opportunity, followed by Curiosity in 2012, followed by Perseverance that is scheduled to land on march in early 2021.
Via – NASA