NASA’ s Mars 2020 mission is scheduled to launch next Thursday, July 30th, after the United Arab Emirates and China both successfully launched their probes destined to Mars within the last week. This launch window is critical while the positions of Earth and Mars are in optimal alignment for landing on the Red Planet. If this window of opportunity is missed, launches to Mars would have to wait another two years! All 3 missions are scheduled to land on Mars in February 2021.
On board NASA’ s mission is the Perseverance rover, which will explore the landing site at Jezero crater, searching for “signals of carbon that could have been left behind by microbial life”, and collect samples. Perseverance carries a small camera-equipped helicopter named Ingenuity that will mainly explore the site. Red Canyon was proud to support this mission at JPL alongside our hard-working teammates! Be sure to mark your calendars and watch the launch online!