NASA’s 2020 Mars Perseverance Rover Mission

Editorial

This month, NASA will launch the new Rover mission called ‘Perseverance’ to Mars. The robot will primarily investigate the possibilities of life on Mars. Here is what you need to know.

July 30 | 13:50 CEST / 4:50 PDT / 7:50 EDT

This is the time when the first launch opportunity begins. The mission was initially scheduled to launch on July 17. This has however been delayed until July 30. In total, seventeen launch opportunities are planned in July and August. These can be found here. The so-called “launch windows” last between 30 minutes and 2 hours, depending on the launch date. The robot is launched with an Atlas V-541 missile.

Mission

The Rover is scheduled to land on Mars on February 18 2021, at around 20:00 UTC / 15:00 EST / 12:00 PST. Perseverance will then do research on the following subjects:

  1. Determine if there has ever been life on Mars
    The Rover will investigate whether there have previously been environments in which microbiological life would have been possible.
  2. “Characterizing” the Mars climate
    The robot investigates whether there are actually signs of past microbiological life on the planet. Special attention is paid to certain rocks.
  3. Investigate the Mars geology
    The Rover will collect rock and soil samples. These may be returned to Earth on a future mission.
  4. Preparing for human exploration
    Perseverance will also be a preparation mission for human exploration of Mars. For example, the robot will test oxygen production in the Martian atmosphere.

Launch Opportunities

All information about the Perseverance Rover mission can be found on NASA’s website.

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