Photos show Chinese rover on dusty, rocky Martian surface

BEIJING (AP) — The dusty, rocky Martian surface and a Chinese rover and lander bearing small nationwide flags had been seen in pictures launched Friday that the rover took on the purple planet.

The 4 footage launched by the China National Space Administration additionally show the higher stage of the Zhurong rover and the view from the rover earlier than it rolled off its platform.

Zhurong positioned a distant digital camera about 10 meters (33 toes) from the touchdown platform, then withdrew to take a bunch portrait, the CNSA stated.

China landed the Tianwen-1 spacecraft carrying the rover on Mars final month after it spent about three months orbiting the purple planet. China is the second nation to land and function a spacecraft on Mars, after the United States.

The orbiter and lander each show small Chinese flags and the lander has outlines of the mascots for the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics and Paralympics.

The six-wheeled rover is surveying an space often called Utopia Planitia, particularly looking for indicators of water or ice that might lend clues as as to if Mars ever sustained life.

At 1.85 meters (6 toes) in peak, Zhurong is considerably smaller than the U.S.’s Perseverance rover which is exploring the planet with a tiny helicopter. NASA expects its rover to gather its first pattern in July for return to Earth as early as 2031.

In addition to the Mars mission, China’s formidable house program plans to ship the primary crew to its new house station subsequent week. The three crew members plan to remain for 3 months on the Tianhe, or Heavenly Harmony, station, far exceeding the size of any earlier Chinese mission. They will carry out spacewalks, development and upkeep work and perform science experiments.

Subsequent launches are deliberate to develop the station, ship up provides and alternate crews. China has additionally has introduced again lunar samples, the primary by any nation’s house program because the 1970s, landed a probe and rover on the moon’s much less explored far aspect.

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