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Space & Astronomy

Two probes arrive at Mars mere hours apart

By T.K. Randall
February 11, 2021 · Comment icon 13 comments

An artist's impression of the UAE's Hope spacecraft arriving at Mars. Image Credit: MBRSC
Space probes sent by China and the United Arab Emirates have both entered into orbit around Mars.
On February 9th, the UAE became the fifth nation to place a spacecraft into orbit around the Red Planet after its Hope orbiter arrived following a seven month journey through the solar system.

The probe is carrying three main instruments designed to study the planet's atmosphere and will investigate how neutral atoms of hydrogen and oxygen leak into space.

It will also capture some breathtaking new images of Mars from high above.

The probe wasn't the only one to arrive in orbit around the Red Planet this week - mere hours later on February 10th, China's Tianwen-1 (or 'Questions to Heaven') arrived safely as well.
This makes China the sixth spacefaring nation to successfully achieve such a feat.

Unlike the UAE probe however, Tianwen-1 will actually send a lander down to the surface of Mars and deploy a rover which will explore the area around the landing site.

If successful, it will make China the third nation to achieve a soft landing on Mars as well as the second to successfully operate a rover on its surface.

The mission is further evidence of China's ever-accelerating space program.

Source: BBC News | Comments (13)

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Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #4 Posted by RoofGardener 3 years ago
Hmm.. the Arab Emirates space mission ?  Well, I guess they paid for it. But the Probe is made in America, and the launch vehicle (and launch control) is Japanese. 
Comment icon #5 Posted by third_eye 3 years ago
What's your point?  ~
Comment icon #6 Posted by RoofGardener 3 years ago
My point is that it is misleading to call this an 'Arab' or 'UAE' mars probe. The UAE commissioned it, but they built neither the probe, nor the space rocket. 
Comment icon #7 Posted by third_eye 3 years ago
So your point is that NASA would more accurately be rendered as NAZISA  ~  
Comment icon #8 Posted by RoofGardener 3 years ago
No.  The Nazis never successfully entered orbit. The peak of their technology was the V2 rocket, which only went about 50 miles high when on a ballistic trajectory, or about 200 miles if fired straight up. It was therefore incapable of even a single orbital flight.  NASA used some of their research, but developed - and then built - the rockets themselves, and controlled their launch. They also build the subsequent satellites and moon-landers etc.   
Comment icon #9 Posted by third_eye 3 years ago
So your point is the NAZI rocket scientists were bad Space engineers but good Nazi missile launchers.  Your right hand strokes your left hand well... Very well in fact...  ~
Comment icon #10 Posted by Abramelin 3 years ago
Third_eye, please correct me if I am wrong, but  I have noticed you are always overly sensitive concerning any hint to criticism on whatever happens in E/SE-Asia. But maybe it's just me
Comment icon #11 Posted by third_eye 3 years ago
I just can't let a good joke go by unmolested...  The sensitivity is all relative...  ~
Comment icon #12 Posted by RoofGardener 3 years ago
Well, it appears that a Chinese probe is ALSO due to arrive at Mars, at roughly the same time as the "UAE" one.  So, if we are to believe the Space Force series, the chinese probe will immediately eat the UAE one
Comment icon #13 Posted by NCC1701 3 years ago
never mind

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