NASA’s Perseverance Mars rover just fired up its deep-area thrusters for the first time.
Perseverance, the centerpiece of NASA’s $2.7 billion Mars 2020 mission, refined its study course towards the Red Planet with a trajectory-correction maneuver on Friday (Aug. 14), 15 days just after the existence-searching rover lifted off.
The maneuver, which utilized eight thrusters on Perseverance’s cruise phase — the automobile that carries the rover by means of deep room — was a results, mission workforce members announced through Twitter on Friday.
Associated: The Mars Perseverance rover mission in shots
My to start with planned Trajectory Correction Maneuver was a success. I do TCMs on my journey to keep on focus on for a Feb. 18, 2021 day with Mars. I left Earth above 2 weeks ago and already place on 27+ million miles. Only ~265 million additional to go! #CountdownToMars https://t.co/1PJU9YwxvJ pic.twitter.com/wdvVPHqPvJAugust 15, 2020
Perseverance’s mission plan calls for 5 trajectory-correction maneuvers to set the rover up for its pinpoint landing inside of Mars’ Jezero Crater on Feb. 18, 2021. The four remaining engine burns are scheduled to just take put on Sept. 28, Dec. 20, Feb. 10 and Feb. 16. (There is also a backup opportunity on Feb. 17 if essential, and a ultimate “contingency” window on Feb. 18, just nine hrs just before landing.)
Perseverance launched July 30 on a mission to seek out out symptoms of ancient Mars existence within the 28-mile-wide (45 kilometers) Jezero Crater, which hosted a lake and river delta in the historic previous. The rover will also gather and cache samples for future return to Earth, possibly as early as 2031.
Mars 2020 will test out new exploration systems as very well. For illustration, a tiny helicopter named Ingenuity is traveling to the Purple Earth on the rover’s belly and will try the initially-at any time rotorcraft flight on a globe past Earth.
On top of that, 1 of Perseverance’s devices, termed MOXIE (quick for “Mars Oxygen ISRU Experiment”), will deliver oxygen from the carbon dioxide-dominated Martian environment. A scaled-up model of MOXIE could just one day assistance human pioneers get a foothold on Mars, NASA officers have claimed. (The company aims to place boots on the Pink World in the 2030s.)
Mike Wall is the writer of “Out There” (Grand Central Publishing, 2018 illustrated by Karl Tate), a e-book about the lookup for alien life. Comply with him on Twitter @michaeldwall. Follow us on Twitter @Spacedotcom or Facebook.
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