NASA Prepares to Launch the Mars Rover Perseverance (22 photos)

On July 30, NASA is set to launch a car-sized rover named Perseverance and a robotic helicopter named Ingenuity to the planet Mars, to search for signs of past microbial life, and examine the Martian climate and geology in an area known as Jezero crater. If all goes according to schedule, the Mars 2020 mission will land its robotic explorers on Mars on February 18, 2021, after six and a half months of travel time. Shortly after landing, the Ingenuity helicopter will be deployed, becoming the first aircraft to fly on another planet. As final preparations are made for launch, have a look at some of the assembly and testing work involved in the Mars 2020 mission over the past few years.

In a clean room at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, engineers observed the first driving test for NASA’s Mars 2020 rover (now named “Perseverance”) on December 17, 2019.

NASA / JPL-Caltech)

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