The American Mars ATV Perseverance has successfully landed on the surface of Mars. The descent into the Jezero crater took place at about 22.55 Finnish time on Thursday.
The landing was preceded by 400 torturous seconds in the thin atmosphere of Mars, during which moments of Perseverance’s fate settled.
For this 400-second torment, there is its own saying, “seven minutes of horror”. During them, it becomes clear whether the walker will be able to land as planned or whether it will be destroyed already when trying to do so. Perseverance, in Finnish Sisu, succeeded.
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“The landing is assured,” said the head of the operation Swati mohan. “Perseverance is safely on the surface of Mars.”
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The walker had already managed to send his first pictures of Mars. The first black-and-white photo taken by the ATV has been shared on a Twitter account maintained by the U.S. Space Agency NASA.
Director of Nassa Steve Jurczyk called the landing an “incredible achievement”.
“You don’t know how emotional this is for me,” Jurczyk told news agency Reuters.
Perseverance is already the Fifth Marcher sent to Mars. The first of these, Mars Pathfinder, landed on the red planet in 1997. To date, all ATVs that have visited Mars have been U.S..
The series shows how the landing went:
The size of the Perseverance is in the class of a small SUV, ie 3 x 2.7 x 2.2 meters.
At its bottom is probably the most expensive small helicopter in the world. Its development and construction cost about 65 million euros.
The robot hand will detach the robot to its feet perhaps as early as March. Then it rises to its wings. That would be the first time a winged device rises from the surface of a foreign celestial body.
The Ingenuity helicopter, in Finnish Nokkeluus, stays kindly near the ATV. It flies for a maximum of only 90 seconds at a time and only rises to a height of meters.
The main purpose of the five test flights is to test whether Mars can fly properly in a thin atmosphere.
Nasa defined the duration of Perseverance’s missions as two Earth years. At that time, the planet Mars orbits about one revolution around the Sun, that is, its own year.
The ATV first looks for areas that once had primitive life. It is hoped to find signs of microbes, either past or present.
Signs of life can be found in certain types of rocks. The ATV has a laser and spectrometer that scans for promising rocks. The radar, in turn, picks up echoes from the geology of Martian soil.
Perseverance also collects 43 interesting drill and rock samples in protective tubes. It then leaves the rocks in a marked place in the crater of Jezero.
One of Perseverance’s goals is also to test whether oxygen can be produced in the Martian atmosphere from its carbon dioxide. Therefore, the ATV has a small research chamber.
Source: Tiede by www.tiede.fi.
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