Published: Sat, November 24, 2018
Sci-tech | By Jackie Newman

Ancient Mars crater chosen as landing site for 2020 space rover

Ancient Mars crater chosen as landing site for 2020 space rover

"Getting samples from this unique area will revolutionize how we think about Mars and its ability to harbor life", he added.

NASA's InSight is set to land on Mars in less than a week and it is accompanied by twin orbiters called MarCO or Mars Cube One, according to Science News.

United States space agency NASA has found a suitable landing site for its Mars 2020 rover mission, which is scheduled to launch in July 2020.

NASA has been flying past, orbiting, landing and roving over Mars since 1965.

The $2.5 billion rover is planned to launch in July 2020, and land in February 2021.

The crater was chosen after a five-year search that examined some 60 other sites on Mars.

At least five different kinds of rocks, including "clays and carbonates that have high potential to preserve signatures of past life", are believed to lie in the crater, just north of the Martian equator, the USA space agency said.

Mars InSight
NASA Picks Landing Spot for 2020 Mars Rover

Named WALL-E and EVE after the main characters in the 2008 animated movie, the twin CubeSats will pass within a few thousand miles (kilometres) of Mars as the lander attempts its dicey touchdown.

This mission will study the internal structure, the tectonic and seismic activity on Mars.

The event will start at 10pm with a lecture on landing on planets by Dr. Essam Heggy, Research Scientist in Earth and Planetary Sciences and a member of several Space Missions. Upon the landing of InSight, the twin CubeSats would navigate their way to the lander's position, allowing them to send information back to Earth.

Jezero Crater is thought to be the site of an ancient river delta on the western edge of Isidis Planitia, a giant impact basin just north of the Martian equator. TRN will enable the "sky crane" descent stage, the rocket-powered system that carries the rover down to the surface, to avoid hazardous areas.

"The Mars 2020 engineering team has done a tremendous amount of work to prepare us for this decision".

The evening of November 26 research center of NASA, "jet propulsion Laboratory" (JPL) will live-blog the process of landing on the surface of the fourth planet from the Sun Mars lander InSight.

InSight is very different from NASA's famous Mars rovers, Curiosity and Opportunity.

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