Perseverance : NASA’s Mars Mission

Perseverance : NASA's Mars Mission

By Juliana Lee

Aliens, extraterrstial life, and the possibilites of living on another planet are things that people have been curious about for ages. National Aeronautics and Space Administration, or NASA, has tried to tackle these questions with their Mars Exploration Program and recently conducted the next part of their program. They had successfully landed their rover named Perseverance.

Perseverance on the Red Planet will be searching for living conditions and according to their site,”testing a method for producing oxygen from the Martian atmosphere, identifying other resources (such as subsurface water), improving landing techniques, and characterizing weather, dust, and other potential environmental conditions that could affect future astronauts living and working on Mars.”

For approximately two years, the rover will stay on site surveying the terrain of Mars. The rover also will be searching for signs of microbial life from the past and will be collecting samples of rocks and soils for examination. In order to successfully fulfill all its objectives, Perseverance is equipped with new technology such as camera systems, sensors, and the Mars Oxygen In-Situ Resource Utilization Experiment that will attempt to create oxygen out of the exisiting carbon dioxide in Mar’s atmosphere.

Not only was it one of the rare and unforgettable highlights so far in this decade, but it also held huge signficance to NASA. The agency has been working on this rover for over a year and finally were able to see the culmination of all their efforts on that Thursday. Since their last rover’s landing named Curisosity in 2012, NASA was struggling with funding their next missions for Mars exploration. Despite these hurdles, they were able to persevere. They also noted the significance of this mission by encoding a special message on the parachute of the rover. On the parachute were the words “Dare mighty things” from JFK and the coordinates of the Jet Propulsion Labratory which was where the parachute was created.

Daryna Yushchenko, a junior at Hills, stated that “[S]eeing Perseverance land was really exciting. Since the rover is the first to be specifically dedicated to astrobiology research the data and samples it collects can be revolutionary. Knowing that so many people dedicated countless of hours to getting a man made robot onto another planet is inspirational and amazing to watch”

Perseverance Fact Sheet

3-D Viewing of Perseverance

Landing of the Rover on February 18