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Space & Astronomy

China rover returns first photographs from Mars

May 19, 2021 | Comment icon 14 comments

The view from China's Zhurong rover. Image Credit: CNSA
China made history on Sunday by becoming only the second nation to land a rover on the surface of Mars.
With NASA making the process of landing rovers on Mars seem almost straight forward, it's easy to forget that until now - America has been the only nation on Earth to actually achieve this.

With the successful touchdown of China's Zhurong rover, however, this has now changed.

Scientists in China hope that the six-wheeled vehicle, which touched down on Utopia Planitia in the planet's northern hemisphere, will operate on the surface for at least 90 Martian days.
It will communicate with Earth via it's companion Tianwen-1 spacecraft up in orbit.

Weighing 240kg and looking rather a lot like NASA's old Spirit and Opportunity rovers, Zhurong is equipped with instruments designed to analyze the chemical composition of the rocks.

It also has a radar tool capable of searching for signs of sub-surface water-ice.

It will be interesting to see what, if anything, it discovers during its mission over the coming weeks.

Source: BBC News | Comments (14)

Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #5 Posted by Myles 8 months ago
I was joking.
Comment icon #6 Posted by TheSpaceResident 8 months ago
Well, according to the information I know, the rover is equipped with six instruments. There are two cameras: a multi-spectrum camera and a camera for navigation and topography. Mars Meteorological Measurement Instrument is a weather station on the rover, and Mars Surface Compound Detector will analyze the surface and search for traces of life. Engineers developed a separate instrument to detect a magnetic field Mars Surface Magnetic Field Detector. And the last one is Subsurface Penetrating Radar that'll image the ground of Mars.
Comment icon #7 Posted by TheSpaceResident 8 months ago
I'm too)
Comment icon #8 Posted by Buzz_Light_Year 8 months ago
Comment icon #9 Posted by Still Waters 8 months ago
Latest: China on Mars: Zhurong rover returns first pictures
Comment icon #10 Posted by OverSword 8 months ago
Actually the USA Viking lander was also a first attempt. Not really a rover but still, did everything but move.
Comment icon #11 Posted by TheSpaceResident 8 months ago
Yeah, I remember) Don't think that I want to diminish the achievements of USA)
Comment icon #12 Posted by Still Waters 8 months ago
Latest: China just became the second country to drive a rover on the surface of Mars China's Zhurong rover left its landing platform and drove on the surface of Mars on Saturday, state media reported -- making the country only the second after the US to land and operate a rover on the red planet. The six-wheel solar-powered rover, which weighs about 240 kilograms (529 pounds), touched down on Mars on May 15. Its mission is intended to last three months, the Chinese government said, during which time it will search for signs or evidence of ancient life on Mars' surface. [More]
Comment icon #13 Posted by Still Waters 8 months ago
China's Zhurong Mars rover takes a selfie China's Zhurong rover has sent back a batch of new images from Mars - including a "selfie". The robot, which landed in May, positioned a wireless camera on the ground and then rolled back a short distance to take the snap. To Zhurong's right is the rocket-powered platform that brought the six-wheeled vehicle to a soft touchdown. Both display prominent Chinese flags.
Comment icon #14 Posted by Still Waters 7 months ago
China releases videos of its Zhurong Mars rover The China National Space Agency (CNSA) says Zhurong has driven 236m in 42 Mars sols (as of 27 June). A sol is a Martian day. It lasts slightly longer than an Earth day, at 24 hours and 39 minutes.

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