Science & Technology

China’s Zhurong rover captures its first images on Mars

Beijing, May 20 (EFE).- China’s Zhurong rover has captured its first images of Mars since its arrival at the weekend, and which were published by the China National Space Administration (CNSA).

In a statement published on its website late Wednesday, the CNSA showed two photos and two short videos that the rover of the Tianwen-1, the first mission of the Asian country to reach the surface of a planet other than Earth, sent on May 17.

One of the images shows the exit ramp of the lander module taken from the onboard Zhurong that, according to the CNSA, is carrying out preparations to leave the lander and will select an opportunity to advance towards the surface of Mars and start inspections.

The image, in black and white, is taken by the rover of what will be its travel direction, and a barren, dusty terrain with small rocks to the horizon.

The other snapshot, taken from the rear of Zhurong (named for the god of fire in Chinese mythology), is in color and shows the rover’s solar panels and antenna against red soil and rocks.

Two published videos taken by the Tianwen-1 orbiter module show how the lander and the rover separated from the orbiter during landing on May 15.

The touchdown took place without incident on the plain known as Utopia Planitia, making China the third country to land on Mars, decades after the United States and the former Soviet Union.

Tianwen-1 (translated as Heavenly Questions) is China’s first exploration mission to Mars and the first in history to combine travel, orbit entry and descent into a single mission.

Chinese scientists intend to find more evidence of the existence of water or ice on the planet, as well as carry out research on the material composition of the surface of Mars and the characteristics of the climate. EFE


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