NASA’s Mars Perseverance Rover has just ticked over one year on the Martian planet and in that time, it has notched up a number of amazing firsts, during its scientific exploration.
1. New Distance Record Set
travelled the most distance in a single day, driving almost 320 meters, using
its own self-driving software.
2. The First Helicopter on Another World
The tiny helicopter named Ingenuity, has broken all mission expectations by successfully flying 20 trips, travelling more than 4.3 kilometres and lasting over twelve times longer than originally planned.
3. Heaviest Rover to Land on Mars
Weighing almost 1 ton or 1,025 kilograms, Perseverance is carrying the heaviest payload of instruments on any rover, enabling it to conduct scientific objectives to search for ancient life and gather rocks and soil.
4. First Rock Samples Collected from Another Planet
The rovers Sample Caching System is one of the most complex robotic systems ever built. The samples collected are carefully considered, regarding their location and scientific value.
5. Converting Carbon Dioxide into Oxygen
Perseverance carries an instrument called MOXIE, the Mars Oxygen In-Situ Resource Utilization Experiment. For the first time ever, it was able to achieve this vital task, pointing the way for future human space exploration.
Need a Dark Sky?
So, if you have got through the bustle of the holidays, why not take a breather, re-charge the batteries and go outside to look upon our marvellous starry skies. The views are breathtaking, particularly in #astrotourism country, and maybe stargazing and astronomy can become your hobby as well.