The rover was launched successfully July 30, 2020. Its mission is to search for signs of past microbial life and collect rock and dust samples from Mars.
The Perseverance rover mounted on an Atlas V rocket — provided by the United Launch Alliance (ULA), a spacecraft launch service provider — sits at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida, US. Photo: ULA
The Atlas V rocket lifted off towards the red planet at 7:50 a.m. EDT (1150 GMT). NASA initially feared the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) would result in the Perseverance rover missing its three-week launch window. Photo: ULA
The liftoff was said to be an important victory for NASA, as a comparable opportunity would not come again until 2022, costing an extra $500 million, NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine was quoted as saying by space.com. Photo: ULA
The mission, however, suffered a post-launch hiccup, with a glitch that sent the spacecraft into a protective ‘safe mode’. The spacecraft got a little colder than expected when passing through Earth’s shadow. Photo: ULA
The spacecraft will, however, return to a normal operations mode July 31, Matt Wallace, deputy programme manager for NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), was quoted as saying by space.com. Photo: NASA / Joel Kowsky
The Perseverance rover will land on Mars’ Jerezo crater a little after 3.40 pm EST on February 18, 2021. Pictured here: An artist’s concept of the rover. Photo: NASA / JPL-Caltech
An illustration of the route the Mars mission will take to the red planet. This includes many trajectory correction manoeuvres to adjust its flight path. Photo: NASA / JPL-Caltech
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