Join NASA Aerospace Engineer Dr. Lauren Abbott on Facebook Live for a closer look at the Mars 2020 Perseverance Rover and the technologies that enable Perseverance to make the journey to Mars! NASA’s Mars 2020 Mission is targeted to launch soon in the window from July 30 to August 15, 2020. It will land the Perseverance rover in Mars’ Jezero Crater on February 18, 2021. Perseverance boasts a sophisticated design with a suite of cutting-edge instruments that will allow it to tackle some ambitious science goals: (1) seek potential biosignatures or signs of past microbial life and (2) characterize the planet’s climate and geology looking for evidence of ancient habitable environments. But what technologies are needed to get to Mars?
We will overview the technologies that enable Perseverance to make the roughly 7-month journey to Mars, staring with the launch on an Atlas V-541 rocket and ending with the landing of the Perseverance rover on the surface of Mars using the sophisticated Entry, Descent, and Landing System. We will then take a closer look at the thermal protection materials that make up the spacecraft’s heat shield, which keep the spacecraft and rover safe during entry into Mars’ atmosphere. Lastly, we will take a peek at a few of the materials challenges that lay ahead for the future of Mars exploration.
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