Piece of Kitchener technology lands on Mars on Perseverance rover

Piece of Kitchener technology lands on Mars on Perseverance rover”

Perseverance landed in an area of Mars called Jezero Crater, just north of the planet's equator.

There's a spacecraft and a rover about 200 million kilometres (124m/miles) away from Earth that needs all the help it can get at that time. China hopes to become the second nation in late spring with its own life-seeking rover; its vessel entered orbit around Mars last week along with a United Arab Emirates spacecraft.

Scientists hope to find biosignatures embedded in samples of ancient sediments that Perseverance is created to extract from Martian rock for future analysis back on Earth - the first such specimens ever collected by humankind from another planet.

Cheering but, in accordance with COVID-19 precautions not (as they normally would) hugging each other, the team celebrated the landing and soon were treated to the first images sent back from the rover.

Two subsequent Mars missions are planned to retrieve the samples and return them to NASA in the next decade.

And the rover will use an onboard instrument suite to synthesize oxygen using the carbon dioxide in the thin Martian atmosphere.

NASA's most sophisticated rover to date has a packed agenda for the next few years. It's the first chopper attempting to fly on another planet.

The planet has always been a death trap for incoming spacecraft, and it took a nail-biting 11 and a half minutes for a signal confirming the successful landing in the Jezero Crater to reach Earth.

NASA is bracing itself for "seven minutes of terror" Thursday afternoon.

More news: Democrats set to unveil Biden’s immigration Bill

This illustration depicts NASA's Perseverance rover operating on the surface of Mars.

The $2.7 billion mission, known as Mars 2020, launched July 30 of a year ago on a United Launch Alliance Atlas 5. The almost seven-month journey the spacecraft took to reach Mars was a gentle coast compared to the final, frenzied seven minutes of atmospheric entry and descent it had to execute in order to stick its landing.

It took a nail-biting delay of 11½ minutes for a signal that confirmed its success to reach Earth. Jezero Crater is a 28 mile-wide impact crater that used to be a lake; scientists believe it's an ideal place to look for evidence of ancient microbial life on Mars.

The landing sequence for Perseverance is essentially the same high-wire act that a previous rover, Curiosity, used to land in 2012.

"That's pretty exciting because for once, we actually get to answer the question, were we ever alone in the universe?" he said. "There's no go-backs. There's no retries", deputy project manager Matt Wallace said Wednesday. "We start by sending, you know, our eyes and arms there in the form of a robot". The Mars landing engines, which include eight retrorockets, fired to slow the descent to 1.7 miles per hour - or the average walking speed of a human.

Like its predecessor Curiosity, which is still operational and making great science, Perseverance is a semi-autonomous mobile science platform, aka a rover.

Retuning samples is the logical - and necessary - next step in Mars exploration.

The helicopter team will make sure Ingenuity is safe, healthy and ready to fly, "a true extraterrestrial Wright Brothers moment", according to Thomas Zurbuchen, associate administrator for NASA's Science Mission Directorate.

That a safe landing would happen today was never guaranteed, with NASA saying it would be the most challenging yet.

Like this



19 February 2021
'A dour political hack': Trump levels stinging criticism at Mitch McConnell
Kinzinger launched a political action committee in January to support anti-Trump Republicans and to purge Trumpism from the party. Trump said he would vow to support primary challengers against congressional Republicans that voted for his second impeachment.

18 February 2021
Cruz on vacation in Mexico as storm slams Texas
Abbott called for an investigation Tuesday of the grid manager, the Electric Reliability Council of Texas. Beto O'Rourke, a Democrat who lost to Cruz in the 2018 Texas race for U.S.

18 February 2021
Bob Dole diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer TODAY
The young Army platoon leader spent three years recovering in a hospital but never regained use of his right hand. After his political career, Dole championed a movement to memorialize WWII on the National Mall.

18 February 2021
Facebook blocks news sites, charities, government pages in Australia
However, Frydenberg today said "we certainly weren't given any notice by Facebook" regarding Thursday's media industry maelstrom. Google made peace with Australia's biggest publisher, Rupert Murdoch-owned News Corp, and agreed to a three-year licensing deal.

18 February 2021
New Zealand lashes at Australia in citizenship row over terror suspect
Legislation in Australia automatically cancels a dual-citizen's citizenship when they engage in terrorism, he said. She was accompanied by two small children.

18 February 2021
United States indicts 3 N. Korean hackers in attempted theft of $1.3b
The prospect of any of the North Korean hackers facing justice in a US court is remote at best given their role in the regime. They live in North Korea but traveled to and worked from Russian Federation and China, the indictment alleged.

18 February 2021
Donald Trump's Atlantic City casino implodes, Mar-a-Lago helipad demolished
Local hotels sold viewing packages for the implosion, and nearby Bader Field charged $10 per auto to watch the implosion up close. That's because I've now seen the video of Donald Trump's Atlantic City hotel and casino being blown up.

17 February 2021
Covid-19: By the numbers, February 16
The Eastern Cape has recorded 25 fatalities, the Free State 11, the Northern Cape 6 and Kwa-Zulu Natal 3 new related deaths. Vaccinations have stalled due to supply constraints, but there were 8,773 new vaccinations conducted in the past four days.

17 February 2021
Crowds to return for Australian Open 2021 blockbusters
Australia has reported over 29,000 cases and 909 deaths since the start of the pandemic - far fewer than many nations. At least two of them had the United Kingdom variant.

16 February 2021
Winter storm wreaks havoc across the US
In Kansas, where wind chills dropped to as low as minus 30 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 34 degrees Celsius) in some areas, Gov. Harris County officials said a facility storing the vaccines had lost power Monday and that a backup generator also failed.