NASA’s Mars Perseverance Rover (formerly Mars 2020) has a launch window from July 20 thru August 11, 2020 with a planned landing for February 18, 2021. The landing site selected is Jezero Crater at the coordinates 18.38°N 77.58°E, at nearly the same longitude as the Viking I lander in 1976. Perseverance has four major goals. The first goal is to determine whether life ever arose on Mars, the second goal is to characterize the climate of Mars, third is to characterize the geology of Mars, fourth and most importantly to prepare for human exploration of Mars.
Perseverance, nicknamed Percy, was once thought of as a clone of MSL Curiosity, which landed in Gale crater in 2012. Some of the systems are the same and some have been updated with current technology. The 2020 rover is over 150 kg heavier than the MSL rover, weighing in at 1,025 kg. Perseverance will utilize the same landing system as Curiosity, the skycrane, which is enhanced with updated technology such as terrain relative navigation. This system will help Perseverance avoid landing in a dangerous area. Another new technology is the system called range trigger, which tells the parachute when to open in order for the rover to land in the desired landing spot. This technology saves time, as previous rovers had to land in a flat area and later drive to the more interesting targets. Perseverance has updated titanium wheels which include cleats and spokes as scientists discovered that Curiosity’s wheels were being damaged by the sharp rocks. The wheels for Perseverance were redesigned to withstand damage from the sharp rocks.
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- Virginia Middle School Student Earns Honor of Naming NASA’s Next Mars Rover (Mar 06)
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- Look down into a pit on Mars. The caved-in roof of a lava tube could be a good place to explore on the Red Planet (Feb 28)
- What can the coronavirus outbreak teach us about bringing Mars samples back to Earth? (Feb 27)
- NASA’s InSight Lander Detects Hundreds of ‘Marsquakes,’ Proving Mars is Seismically Active (Feb 24)
- Japan will launch the first-ever sample return mission from the Martian system (Feb 21)
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- NASA Will Soon Use ‘Space Lasers’ To Give Us Live Video From Mars And The Moon (Feb 12)
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News about Marspedia
- July 3, 2020 - Marspedia Vice Chair Nicole Willett completes new article on Mars 2020 Rover which is featured on the main page.
- Mar 24, 2020 - Marspedia volunteer Jim Secosky completes detail pages for each Mars Quadrangle, to further bolster our Mars Atlas.
- Jan 14, 2020 - Marspedia volunteers led by Michel Lamontagne complete first version of clickable Mars Atlas.
- Dec 5, 2019 - 2019 Annual Report on Marspedia, presented by James Burk at the 22nd Annual Mars Society Convention.
- Mar 5, 2019 - The New Category Hierarchy and our custom Category Selection Tool (part of the MediaWiki Visual Editor) have now been rolled out to Marspedia.
- Sep 15, 2018 - James Burk and Frank Crossman present the last year's progress on Marspedia at the 21st Annual Mars Society Convention.
- May 7, 2018 - Marspedia Editorial Subcommittee finishes work on a new Category hierarchy covering Human exploration & settlement topics.
- Dec 31, 2017 - The Moon Society recounts the recent history of Marspedia in latest Moon Miners' Manifesto newsletter.
- Nov 17, 2017 - The Mars Society officially announces its involvement in Marspedia and calls for volunteers to help.