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This Thursday, Feb. 18, 2021 photo provided by NASA shows the Perseverance rover lowered towards the surface of Mars during its powered descent. (NASA via AP)
AP PROVIDES ACCESS TO THIS PUBLICLY DISTRIBUTED HANDOUT PHOTO PROVIDED BY NASA; MANDATORY CREDIT
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This photo released by NASA, shows the Perseverance rover being lowered by the Sky Crane to the surface of Mars on February 18, 2021. - NASA said February 18, 2021 that the Perseverance rover has touched down on the surface of Mars after successfully overcoming a risky landing phase known as the "seven minutes of terror." "Touchdown confirmed," said operations lead Swati Mohan at around 3:55 pm Eastern Time (2055 GMT) as mission control at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory headquarters erupted in cheers. (Photo by - / NASA / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - MANDATORY CREDIT "AFP PHOTO / NASA" - NO MARKETING - NO ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - DISTRIBUTED AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS
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Handout photo of inside a mission support area at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Southern California, Mars 2020 Perseverance team members displayed their joy as the spacecraft successfully completed a complex series of steps to safely touch down on the Martian surface on February 18, 2021 NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory built and manages operations of the Mars 2020 Perseverance rover for NASA. Photo by Nasa via ABACAPRESS.COM
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Handout photo of members of NASA's Mars 2020 Perseverance rover mission are jubilant on February 18, 2021, after the spacecraft successfully touched down on Mars. They are in Mission Control at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Southern California. NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory built and manages operations of the Mars 2020 Perseverance rover for NASA. Photo by Nasa via ABACAPRESS.COM
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Handout photo of members of NASA's Mars 2020 Perseverance rover mission celebrate on February 18, 2021, after learning the spacecraft has touched down on Mars. They are in the Entry, Descent and Landing War Room at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Southern California. Photo by Nasa via ABACAPRESS.COM
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Handout photo of members of NASA's Perseverance Mars rover team watch in mission control as the first images arrive moments after the spacecraft successfully touched down on Mars, Thursday, February 18, 2021, at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. A key objective for Perseverance's mission on Mars is astrobiology, including the search for signs of ancient microbial life. The rover will characterize the planet's geology and past climate, pave the way for human exploration of the Red Planet, and be the first mission to collect and cache Martian rock and regolith. Photo by Bill Ingalls/Nasa via ABACAPRESS.COM
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Handout photo of Perseverance Mars rover mission commentator and guidance, navigation, and controls operations Lead Swati Mohan studies data on monitors in mission control, Thursday, February 18, 2021, at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. A key objective for Perseverance's mission on Mars is astrobiology, including the search for signs of ancient microbial life. The rover will characterize the planet's geology and past climate, pave the way for human exploration of the Red Planet, and be the first mission to collect and cache Martian rock and regolith. Photo by Bill Ingalls/Nasa via ABACAPRESS.COM
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Handout photo of engineer Mallory Lefland experienced the tension and relief shared by the team on Mars 2020 Perseverance landing day, on February 18, 2021. She watched the dramatic entry, descent, and landing from inside a mission support area at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Southern California.Photo by Nasa via ABACAPRESS.COM
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A giant projection of the NASA Mars 2020 mission logo on the north face of the Eiger mountain, by Swiss light artist Gerry Hofstetter, is pictured from the alpine resort of Mannlichen, Switzerland, Monday, February 8, 2021. Several projections were performed both from the ground and helicopter and were carried out over distances of up to 8km and dimensions up to 2.2km in height on the iconic Swiss mountains Eiger, Monch und Jungfrau. The artistic performance pays tribute to the "Mars 2020" Perseverance rover mars mission by the NASA planned for landing on February 18, 2021. (Valentin Flauraud/Keystone via AP)
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A giant projection of the NASA Mars 2020 mission logo on the north face of the Eiger mountain (left), NASA logo on the Monch mountain (center) and and astronaut on the Jungfrau mountain (right), by Swiss light artist Gerry Hofstetter, is pictured from the alpine resort of Mannlichen, Switzerland, Sunday, February 14, 2021. Several projections were performed both from the ground and helicopter and were carried out over distances of up to 8km and dimensions up to 2.2km in height on the iconic Swiss mountains Eiger, Monch und Jungfrau. The artistic performance pays tribute to the "Mars 2020" Perseverance rover mars mission by the NASA planned for landing on February 18, 2021. (Valentin Flauraud/Keystone via AP), APTOPIX
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In this image provided by NASA, members of NASA's Perseverance Mars rover team study data on monitors in mission control, Thursday, Feb. 18, 2021, at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif. NASA's latest road trip to Mars is almost complete. The most elaborate rover ever sent to the red planet will attempt to land Thursday, a week after spacecraft from two other countries entered Martian orbit. (Bill Ingalls/NASA via AP)
AP PROVIDES ACCESS TO THIS PUBLICLY DISTRIBUTED HANDOUT PHOTO PROVIDED BY NASA; MANDATORY CREDIT.
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Images from Nasa are streamed live showing the landing of NASA's Perseverance on Mars, shown on Piccadilly Lights in central London, Thursday Feb. 18, 2021. The Mars rover landing mission begins it's search for traces of life after the successful landing, to explore and collect samples for future return to Earth. Eros statue top left. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant)
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Images from Nasa are streamed live showing the landing of NASA's Perseverance on Mars, shown on Piccadilly Lights in central London, Thursday Feb. 18, 2021. The Mars rover landing mission begins it's search for traces of life after the successful landing, to explore and collect samples for future return to Earth.(AP Photo/Alastair Grant)
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In this photo provided by NASA, members of NASA's Perseverance Mars rover team watch in mission control as the first images arrive moments after the spacecraft successfully touched down on Mars, Thursday, Feb. 18, 2021, at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif. (Bill Ingalls/NASA via AP)
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In this photo provided by NASA, members of NASA's Perseverance Mars rover team watch in mission control as the first images arrive moments after the spacecraft successfully touched down on Mars, Thursday, Feb. 18, 2021, at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif. (Bill Ingalls/NASA via AP)
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A photo provided by NASA, shows members of NASA's Perseverance Mars rover team watch in mission control at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., on Thursday, Feb. 18, 2021, as the first images arrive moments after the spacecraft successfully touched down on Mars. (Bill Ingalls/NASA via The New York Times) -- FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. --
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Members of NASA's Perseverance Mars rover team study data on monitors in mission control, Thursday, Feb. 18, 2021, at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. A key objective for Perseverance's mission on Mars is astrobiology, including the search for signs of ancient microbial life. The rover will characterize the planet's geology and past climate, pave the way for human exploration of the Red Planet, and be the first mission to collect and cache Martian rock and regolith. Photo Credit: (NASA/Bill Ingalls) Please note: Fees charged by the agency are for the agency's services only, and do not, nor are they intended to, convey to the user any ownership of Copyright or License in the material. The agency does not claim any ownership including but not limited to Copyright or License in the attached material. By publishing this material you expressly agree to indemnify and to hold the agency and its directors, shareholders and employees harmless from any loss, claims, damages, demands, expenses (including legal fees), or any causes of action or allegation against the agency arising out of or connected in any way with publication of the material.
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Members of NASA's Perseverance Mars rover team study data on monitors in mission control, on February 18, 2021, at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. - A key objective for Perseverance's mission on Mars is astrobiology, including the search for signs of ancient microbial life. The rover will characterize the planet's geology and past climate, pave the way for human exploration of the Red Planet, and be the first mission to collect and cache Martian rock and regolith. (Photo by Bill INGALLS / NASA / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - MANDATORY CREDIT "AFP PHOTO / NASA/Bill Ingalls" - NO MARKETING - NO ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - DISTRIBUTED AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS
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This NASA photo shows monitors as they show the status of NASA's Deep Space Network ahead of the Perseverance Mars rover landing, on February 18, 2021, at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. - A key objective for Perseverance's mission on Mars is astrobiology, including the search for signs of ancient microbial life. The rover will characterize the planet's geology and past climate, pave the way for human exploration of the Red Planet, and be the first mission to collect and cache Martian rock and regolith. (Photo by Bill INGALLS / NASA / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - MANDATORY CREDIT "AFP PHOTO / NASA/Bill Ingalls" - NO MARKETING - NO ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - DISTRIBUTED AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS
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This NASA photo shows members of NASA's Perseverance Mars rover team as they study data on monitors in mission control, February 18, 2021, at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. - A key objective for Perseverance's mission on Mars is astrobiology, including the search for signs of ancient microbial life. The rover will characterize the planet's geology and past climate, pave the way for human exploration of the Red Planet, and be the first mission to collect and cache Martian rock and regolith. (Photo by Bill INGALLS / NASA / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - MANDATORY CREDIT "AFP PHOTO / NASA/Bill Ingalls" - NO MARKETING - NO ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - DISTRIBUTED AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS
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The entrance to NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) is seen ahead of the Mars 2020 Perseverance rover landing on February 18, 2021 in Pasadena, California. - The Mars exploration rover will search for signs of ancient microbial life and collect rock samples for future return to Earth to study the red planet's geology and climate, paving the way for human exploration. Perseverance also carries the experimental Ingenuity Mars Helicopter - which will attempt the first powered, controlled flight on another planet. (Photo by Patrick T. FALLON / AFP)
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A 3D model of the SuperCam instrument is on display at the French National Center for Space Studies (CNES) ahead of a visit of the French President to watch the landing of NASA's Perseverance Mars rover on the planet Mars, in Paris on February 18, 2021. - The Mars exploration rover will search for signs of ancient microbial life and collect rock samples for future return to Earth to study the red planet's geology and climate, paving the way for human exploration. Perseverance also carries the experimental Ingenuity Mars Helicopter - which will attempt the first powered, controlled flight on another planet. (Photo by Christophe PETIT TESSON / POOL / AFP)
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A 3D model of the SuperCam instrument is on display at the French National Center for Space Studies (CNES) ahead of a visit of the French President to watch the landing of NASA's Perseverance Mars rover on the planet Mars, in Paris on February 18, 2021. - The Mars exploration rover will search for signs of ancient microbial life and collect rock samples for future return to Earth to study the red planet's geology and climate, paving the way for human exploration. Perseverance also carries the experimental Ingenuity Mars Helicopter - which will attempt the first powered, controlled flight on another planet. (Photo by Christophe PETIT TESSON / POOL / AFP)
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A 3D model of the SuperCam instrument is on display at the French National Center for Space Studies (CNES) ahead of a visit of the French President to watch the landing of NASA's Perseverance Mars rover on the planet Mars, in Paris on February 18, 2021. - The Mars exploration rover will search for signs of ancient microbial life and collect rock samples for future return to Earth to study the red planet's geology and climate, paving the way for human exploration. Perseverance also carries the experimental Ingenuity Mars Helicopter - which will attempt the first powered, controlled flight on another planet. (Photo by Christophe PETIT TESSON / POOL / AFP)
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French astrophysicist and SuperCam creator Sylvestre Maurice poses for pictures next to a 3D model of the SuperCam instrument on display at the French National Center for Space Studies (CNES) ahead of a visit of the French President to watch the landing of NASA's Perseverance Mars rover on the planet Mars, in Paris on February 18, 2021. - The Mars exploration rover will search for signs of ancient microbial life and collect rock samples for future return to Earth to study the red planet's geology and climate, paving the way for human exploration. Perseverance also carries the experimental Ingenuity Mars Helicopter - which will attempt the first powered, controlled flight on another planet. (Photo by Christophe PETIT TESSON / POOL / AFP)
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French astrophysicist and SuperCam creator Sylvestre Maurice poses for pictures next to a 3D model of the SuperCam instrument on display at the French National Center for Space Studies (CNES) ahead of a visit of the French President to watch the landing of NASA's Perseverance Mars rover on the planet Mars, in Paris on February 18, 2021. - The Mars exploration rover will search for signs of ancient microbial life and collect rock samples for future return to Earth to study the red planet's geology and climate, paving the way for human exploration. Perseverance also carries the experimental Ingenuity Mars Helicopter - which will attempt the first powered, controlled flight on another planet. (Photo by Christophe PETIT TESSON / POOL / AFP)
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TOPSHOT This NASA photo shows members of NASA's Perseverance rover team as they react in mission control after receiving confirmation the spacecraft successfully touched down on Mars, on February 18, 2021, at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. - A key objective for Perseverance's mission on Mars is astrobiology, including the search for signs of ancient microbial life. The rover will characterize the planet's geology and past climate, pave the way for human exploration of the Red Planet, and be the first mission to collect and cache Martian rock and regolith. (Photo by Bill INGALLS / NASA / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - MANDATORY CREDIT "AFP PHOTO / NASA/Bill Ingalls" - NO MARKETING - NO ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - DISTRIBUTED AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS
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This NASA photo shows members of NASA's Perseverance rover team as they react in mission control after receiving confirmation the spacecraft successfully touched down on Mars, on February 18, 2021, at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. - NASA said February 18, 2021 that the Perseverance rover has touched down on the surface of Mars after successfully overcoming a risky landing phase known as the "seven minutes of terror." "Touchdown confirmed," said operations lead Swati Mohan at around 3:55 pm Eastern Time (2055 GMT) as mission control at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory headquarters erupted in cheers. (Photo by Bill INGALLS / NASA / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - MANDATORY CREDIT "AFP PHOTO / NASA/Bill Ingalls" - NO MARKETING - NO ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - DISTRIBUTED AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS
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This NASA photo shows members of NASA's Perseverance Mars rover team watching in mission control as the first images arrive moments after the spacecraft successfully touched down on Mars, on February 18, 2021, at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. - A key objective for Perseverance's mission on Mars is astrobiology, including the search for signs of ancient microbial life. The rover will characterize the planet's geology and past climate, pave the way for human exploration of the Red Planet, and be the first mission to collect and cache Martian rock and regolith. (Photo by Bill INGALLS / NASA / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - MANDATORY CREDIT "AFP PHOTO / NASA/Bill Ingalls" - NO MARKETING - NO ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - DISTRIBUTED AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS
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This NASA photo shows members of NASA's Perseverance Mars rover team watching in mission control as the first images arrive moments after the spacecraft successfully touched down on Mars, on February 18, 2021, at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. - A key objective for Perseverance's mission on Mars is astrobiology, including the search for signs of ancient microbial life. The rover will characterize the planet's geology and past climate, pave the way for human exploration of the Red Planet, and be the first mission to collect and cache Martian rock and regolith. (Photo by Bill INGALLS / NASA / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - MANDATORY CREDIT "AFP PHOTO / NASA/Bill Ingalls" - NO MARKETING - NO ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - DISTRIBUTED AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS
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This NASA photo shows members of NASA's Perseverance Mars rover team watching in mission control as the first images arrive moments after the spacecraft successfully touched down on Mars, on February 18, 2021, at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. - A key objective for Perseverance's mission on Mars is astrobiology, including the search for signs of ancient microbial life. The rover will characterize the planet's geology and past climate, pave the way for human exploration of the Red Planet, and be the first mission to collect and cache Martian rock and regolith. (Photo by Bill INGALLS / NASA / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - MANDATORY CREDIT "AFP PHOTO / NASA/Bill Ingalls" - NO MARKETING - NO ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - DISTRIBUTED AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS
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Members of NASA's Perseverance Mars rover team watch in mission control as the first images arrive moments after the spacecraft successfully touched down on Mars, Thursday, Feb. 18, 2021, at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. A key objective for Perseverance's mission on Mars is astrobiology, including the search for signs of ancient microbial life. The rover will characterize the planet's geology and past climate, pave the way for human exploration of the Red Planet, and be the first mission to collect and cache Martian rock and regolith. Mandatory Credit: Bill Ingalls / NASA via CNP | usage worldwide
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A full-scale model of the Mars 2020 Mission Perseverance Rover is displayed for the media at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) Wednesday, Feb. 17, 2021, in Pasadena, Calif. NASA's latest road trip to Mars is almost complete. The most elaborate rover ever sent to the red planet will attempt to land Thursday, a week after spacecraft from two other countries entered Martian orbit (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)
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A full-scale model of the Mars 2020 Mission Perseverance Rover is displayed for the media at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) Wednesday, Feb. 17, 2021, in Pasadena, Calif. NASA's latest road trip to Mars is almost complete. The most elaborate rover ever sent to the red planet will attempt to land Thursday, a week after spacecraft from two other countries entered Martian orbit. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)
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A full-scale model of the Mars 2020 Mission Perseverance Rover is displayed for the media at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) Wednesday, Feb. 17, 2021, in Pasadena, Calif. NASA's latest road trip to Mars is almost complete. The most elaborate rover ever sent to the red planet will attempt to land Thursday, a week after spacecraft from two other countries entered Martian orbit. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)
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A full-scale model of the Mars Helicopter Ingenuity is displayed for the media at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) Wednesday, Feb. 17, 2021, in Pasadena, Calif. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)
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In this illustration made available by NASA, the Perseverance rover casts off its spacecraft's cruise stage, minutes before entering the Martian atmosphere. (NASA/JPL-Caltech via AP)
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In this illustration made available by NASA, the Mars 2020 Perseverance rover studies a Mars rock outrcrop. (NASA/JPL-Caltech via AP)
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In this illustration made available by NASA, the spacecraft containing the Perseverance rover slows down using the drag generated by traveling through the Martian atmosphere. (NASA/JPL-Caltech via AP)
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In this illustration made available by NASA, the Perseverance rover gets its first look at the Martian surface below, after ejecting its heat shield just under six minutes after entry into the Mars atmosphere. (NASA/JPL-Caltech via AP)
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In this illustration made available by NASA, the Perseverance rover, with its heat shield facing the planet, begins its descent through the Martian atmosphere. (NASA/JPL-Caltech via AP)
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In this illustration made available by NASA, the Perseverance rover deploys a supersonic parachute from its aeroshell as it slows down before landing on the surface of Mars. (NASA/JPL-Caltech via AP)
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In this illustration made available by NASA, The aeroshell containing the Perseverance rover guides itself towards the Martian surface as it descends through the atmosphere. (NASA/JPL-Caltech via AP)
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This NASA photo released on Februaary 17, 2021 shows the Empire State Building in New York illuminated in red to celebrate the February 18, 2021 scheduled landing on Mars of NASA's Perseverance rover. - A key objective for Perseverance's mission on Mars is astrobiology, including the search for signs of ancient microbial life. The rover will characterize the planet's geology and past climate, pave the way for human exploration of the Red Planet, and be the first mission to collect and cache Martian rock and regolith. (Photo by Emma HOWELLS / NASA / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - MANDATORY CREDIT "AFP PHOTO /NASA/EMMA HOWELLS/HANDOUT " - NO MARKETING - NO ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - DISTRIBUTED AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS
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Handout photo shows meteorites hit Mars and create small craters like the one imaged here. This meteorite hit a dusty area and made a crater, but did something a little more special to the surrounding dust. We can see dozens of dark, dust-free, streaks on slopes surrounding the crater. These slope streaks form when dust slumps downhill and happen naturally on a regular basis. The American space agency says its Perseverance rover is lined up perfectly for its landing on Mars. The robot is heading for a touchdown on Thursday in a crater called Jezero just north of the planet's equator. Its mission objectives will be to search for signs of past life and to collect and prepare rock samples for return to Earth in the 2030s. Photo by NASA via ABACAPRESS.COM
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Handout photo shows a deposit draping the surface like a blanket. The deposit is eroding away, and near the center of the image we can see a section that is bright blue in enhanced color, although the true color is likely reddish. This scarp is exposing ice that makes up most of the mantling deposit. The American space agency says its Perseverance rover is lined up perfectly for its landing on Mars. The robot is heading for a touchdown on Thursday in a crater called Jezero just north of the planet's equator. Its mission objectives will be to search for signs of past life and to collect and prepare rock samples for return to Earth in the 2030s. Photo by NASA via ABACAPRESS.COM
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Handout photo shows the sun rising in Mars' Northern Hemisphere, and spring activity is starting as the seasonal polar cap begins to sublimate (going from ice directly to gas). A layer of dry ice covers the sand dunes in this image. Gas jets sprout through the ice layer carrying dust and sand from the surface, showing up as dark fans. At this time in early Martian spring, the fans are visible between the sand dunes. The ground between the dunes is on the scale of tens of centimeters, and ice in places where the sun hits more directly will thin fastest, releasing the jets. Later, the ice over and around the dunes will rupture and more fans will appear on the dunes. The American space agency says its Perseverance rover is lined up perfectly for its landing on Mars. The robot is heading for a touchdown on Thursday in a crater called Jezero just north of the planet's equator. Its mission objectives will be to search for signs of past life and to collect and prepare rock samples for return to Earth in the 2030s. Photo by NASA via ABACAPRESS.COM
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Handout annotated mosaic depicts a possible route the Mars 2020 Perseverance rover could take across Jezero Crater as it investigates several ancient environments that may have once been habitable. The route begins at the cliffs defining the base of a delta produced by a river as it flowed into a lake that once filled the crater. The path then traverses up and across the delta toward possible ancient shoreline deposits, and then climbs the 2,000-foot-high (610-meter-high) crater rim to explore the surrounding plains. About half of this traverse could be completed in Perseverance's prime mission (one Mars year, or two Earth years). For reference, the prominent crater near the center of the image is about 0.6 miles (1 kilometer) across. The American space agency says its Perseverance rover is lined up perfectly for its landing on Mars. The robot is heading for a touchdown on Thursday in a crater called Jezero just north of the planet's equator. Its mission objectives will be to search for signs of past life and to collect and prepare rock samples for return to Earth in the 2030s. Photo by NASA via ABACAPRESS.COM
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Handout photo of several craters in Arabia Terra are filled with layered rock, often exposed in rounded mounds. The bright layers are roughly the same thickness, giving a stair-step appearance. The process that formed these sedimentary rocks is not yet well understood. They could have formed from sand or volcanic ash that was blown into the crater, or in water if the crater hosted a lake. One thing is certain, though: it wouldn't be hard to get your 10,000 daily steps when going on a hike in beautiful Arabia Terra! The American space agency says its Perseverance rover is lined up perfectly for its landing on Mars. The robot is heading for a touchdown on Thursday in a crater called Jezero just north of the planet's equator. Its mission objectives will be to search for signs of past life and to collect and prepare rock samples for return to Earth in the 2030s. Photo by NASA via ABACAPRESS.COM
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EN_01464952_0006
Handout photo of the white circle near the center of this image of Mars represents the location where NASA's Perseverance rover is expected to land on February 18, 2021. The landing ellipse, measuring 4.8 miles by 4.1 miles (7.7 kilometers by 6.6 kilometers), places the rover at the site of an ancient river delta which could harbor signs of fossilized microbial life. The fan-like shape of the delta is visible in this image, as is the crater rim. The crater was once filled with a lake several hundred feet deep. The basemap image featured here was taken by the High Resolution Stereo Camera aboard the ESA (European Space Agency) Mars Express orbiter. Photo by NASA via ABACAPRESS.COM
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Handout illustration depicts a possible area through which the Mars 2020 Perseverance rover could traverse across Jezero Crater as it investigates several ancient environments that may have once been habitable. The route begins at the cliffs defining the base of a delta produced by a river as it flowed into a lake that once filled the crater. The path then traverses up and across the delta toward possible ancient shoreline deposits, and then climbs the 2,000-foot-high (610-meter-high) crater rim to explore the surrounding plains. About half of this traverse could be completed in Perseverance's prime mission (one Mars year, or two Earth years). For reference, the prominent crater near the center of the image is about 0.6 miles (1 kilometer) across. The American space agency says its Perseverance rover is lined up perfectly for its landing on Mars. The robot is heading for a touchdown on Thursday in a crater called Jezero just north of the planet's equator. Its mission objectives will be to search for signs of past life and to collect and prepare rock samples for return to Earth in the 2030s. Photo by NASA via ABACAPRESS.COM
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Handout illustration of NASA's Perseverance rover exploring inside Mars' Jezero Crater. The 28-mile-wide (45-kilometer-wide) crater is located on the western edge of a flat plain called Isidis Planitia, which lies just north of the Martian equator. NASA believes the ancient lake-delta system there is the best place for Perseverance, in its hunt for signs of past microscopic life, to find and collect promising rock and regolith (broken rock and dust) samples for a possible future return to Earth. The American space agency says its Perseverance rover is lined up perfectly for its landing on Mars. The robot is heading for a touchdown on Thursday in a crater called Jezero just north of the planet's equator. Its mission objectives will be to search for signs of past life and to collect and prepare rock samples for return to Earth in the 2030s. Photo by NASA via ABACAPRESS.COM
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Handout illustration shows the events that occur in the final minutes of the nearly seven-month journey NASA's Perseverance rover takes to Mars. Hundreds of critical events must execute flawlessly and precisely on time for the rover to land on Mars safely on February 18, 2021. Entry, Descent, and Landing, or "EDL," begins when the spacecraft reaches the top of the Martian atmosphere, traveling nearly 12,500 mph (20,000 kph). EDL ends about seven minutes after atmospheric entry, with Perseverance stationery on the Martian surface. At about 6,900 feet (2,100 meters) above the surface, the rover separates from the backshell and fires up the descent stage engines. As the descent stage levels out and slows to its final descent speed of about 1.7 mph (2.7 kph), it initiates the "skycrane" maneuver. About 12 seconds before touchdown, roughly 66 feet (20 meters) above the surface, the descent stage lowers the rover on a set of cables about 21 feet (6.4 meters) long. The rover unstows its mobility system, locking its legs and wheels into a landing position. As soon as the rover senses that its wheels have touched the ground, it cuts the cables connecting it to the descent stage. This frees the descent stage to fly off to make its own uncontrolled landing on the surface, a safe distance away from Perseverance. The American space agency says its Perseverance rover is lined up perfectly for its landing on Mars. The robot is heading for a touchdown on Thursday in a crater called Jezero just north of the planet's equator. Its mission objectives will be to search for signs of past life and to collect and prepare rock samples for return to Earth in the 2030s. Photo by NASA via ABACAPRESS.COM
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TOPSHOT - A full scale model of the Mars 2020 Perseverance rover is displayed at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) on February 16, 2021 in Pasadena, California. - The Mars exploration rover will search for signs of ancient microbial life and collect rock samples for future return to Earth to study the red planet's geology and climate, paving the way for human exploration. Perseverance also carries the experimental Ingenuity Mars Helicopter - which will attempt the first powered, controlled flight on another planet. (Photo by Patrick T. FALLON / AFP)
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TOPSHOT - A full scale model of the experimental Ingenuity Mars Helicopter, which will be carried under the Mars 2020 Perseverance rover, is displayed at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) on February 16, 2021 in Pasadena, California. - The Mars exploration rover will search for signs of ancient microbial life and collect rock samples for future return to Earth to study the red planet's geology and climate, paving the way for human exploration. Perseverance also carries the experimental Ingenuity Mars Helicopter - which will attempt the first powered, controlled flight on another planet. (Photo by Patrick T. FALLON / AFP)
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This NASA handout illustration obtained February 16, 2021 shows NASA's Perseverance's seven primary instruments that involve international partners, for acquiring information about Martian geology, atmosphere, environmental conditions and potential signs of life (biosignatures). - After a seven-month journey, NASA's Perseverance rover prepares to touch down on Mars on February 18, 2021 after first negotiating a risky landing procedure that will mark the start of its multi-year search for signs of ancient microbial life. The Mars 2020 mission, which set off late from Florida in late July, includes the largest ever vehicle to be dispatched to the Red Planet. (Photo by Handout / NASA / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - MANDATORY CREDIT "AFP PHOTO /NASA/JPL-Caltech/HANDOUT " - NO MARKETING - NO ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - DISTRIBUTED AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS
RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - MANDATORY CREDIT "AFP PHOTO /NASA/JPL-Caltech/HANDOUT " - NO MARKETING - NO ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - DISTRIBUTED AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS
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This NASA handout illustration obtained February 16, 2021 shows NASA's Perseverance rover landing safely on Mars. - After a seven-month journey, NASA's Perseverance rover prepares to touch down on Mars on TFebruary 18, 2021 after first negotiating a risky landing procedure that will mark the start of its multi-year search for signs of ancient microbial life.The Mars 2020 mission, which set off late from Florida in late July, includes the largest ever vehicle to be dispatched to the Red Planet. (Photo by Handout / NASA / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - MANDATORY CREDIT "AFP PHOTO /NASA/JPL-Caltech/HANDOUT " - NO MARKETING - NO ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - DISTRIBUTED AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS
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This NASA handout illustration obtained February 16, 2021 shows NASA's Perseverance rover as it fires up its descent stage engines, as it nears the Martian surface. - After a seven-month journey, NASA's Perseverance rover prepares to touch down on Mars on TFebruary 18, 2021 after first negotiating a risky landing procedure that will mark the start of its multi-year search for signs of ancient microbial life.The Mars 2020 mission, which set off late from Florida in late July, includes the largest ever vehicle to be dispatched to the Red Planet. (Photo by Handout / NASA / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - MANDATORY CREDIT "AFP PHOTO /NASA/JPL-Caltech/HANDOUT " - NO MARKETING - NO ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - DISTRIBUTED AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS
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A full scale model of the Mars 2020 Perseverance rover is displayed at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) on February 16, 2021 in Pasadena, California. - The Mars exploration rover will search for signs of ancient microbial life and collect rock samples for future return to Earth to study the red planet's geology and climate, paving the way for human exploration. Perseverance also carries the experimental Ingenuity Mars Helicopter - which will attempt the first powered, controlled flight on another planet. (Photo by Patrick T. FALLON / AFP)
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A full scale model of the Mars 2020 Perseverance rover is displayed at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) on February 16, 2021 in Pasadena, California. - The Mars exploration rover will search for signs of ancient microbial life and collect rock samples for future return to Earth to study the red planet's geology and climate, paving the way for human exploration. Perseverance also carries the experimental Ingenuity Mars Helicopter - which will attempt the first powered, controlled flight on another planet. (Photo by Patrick T. FALLON / AFP)
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A full scale model of the Mars 2020 Perseverance rover is displayed at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) on February 16, 2021 in Pasadena, California. - The Mars exploration rover will search for signs of ancient microbial life and collect rock samples for future return to Earth to study the red planet's geology and climate, paving the way for human exploration. Perseverance also carries the experimental Ingenuity Mars Helicopter - which will attempt the first powered, controlled flight on another planet. (Photo by Patrick T. FALLON / AFP)
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A full scale model of the experimental Ingenuity Mars Helicopter, which will be carried under the Mars 2020 Perseverance rover, is displayed at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) on February 16, 2021 in Pasadena, California. - The Mars exploration rover will search for signs of ancient microbial life and collect rock samples for future return to Earth to study the red planet's geology and climate, paving the way for human exploration. Perseverance also carries the experimental Ingenuity Mars Helicopter - which will attempt the first powered, controlled flight on another planet. (Photo by Patrick T. FALLON / AFP)
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A full scale model of the Mars 2020 Perseverance rover is displayed at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) on February 16, 2021 in Pasadena, California. - The Mars exploration rover will search for signs of ancient microbial life and collect rock samples for future return to Earth to study the red planet's geology and climate, paving the way for human exploration. Perseverance also carries the experimental Ingenuity Mars Helicopter - which will attempt the first powered, controlled flight on another planet. (Photo by Patrick T. FALLON / AFP)
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A full scale model of the Mars 2020 Perseverance rover is displayed at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) on February 16, 2021 in Pasadena, California. - The Mars exploration rover will search for signs of ancient microbial life and collect rock samples for future return to Earth to study the red planet's geology and climate, paving the way for human exploration. Perseverance also carries the experimental Ingenuity Mars Helicopter - which will attempt the first powered, controlled flight on another planet. (Photo by Patrick T. FALLON / AFP)
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TOPSHOT A full scale model of the Mars 2020 Perseverance rover is displayed at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) on February 16, 2021 in Pasadena, California. - The Mars exploration rover will search for signs of ancient microbial life and collect rock samples for future return to Earth to study the red planet's geology and climate, paving the way for human exploration. Perseverance also carries the experimental Ingenuity Mars Helicopter - which will attempt the first powered, controlled flight on another planet. (Photo by Patrick T. FALLON / AFP)
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Jennifer Trosper, Perseverance deputy project manager, stands for a portrait with a full scale model of the Mars 2020 Perseverance rover at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) on February 16, 2021 in Pasadena, California. - The Mars exploration rover will search for signs of ancient microbial life and collect rock samples for future return to Earth to study the red planet's geology and climate, paving the way for human exploration. Perseverance also carries the experimental Ingenuity Mars Helicopter - which will attempt the first powered, controlled flight on another planet. (Photo by Patrick T. FALLON / AFP)
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Jennifer Trosper, Perseverance deputy project manager, stands for a portrait with a full scale model of the Mars 2020 Perseverance rover at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) on February 16, 2021 in Pasadena, California. - The Mars exploration rover will search for signs of ancient microbial life and collect rock samples for future return to Earth to study the red planet's geology and climate, paving the way for human exploration. Perseverance also carries the experimental Ingenuity Mars Helicopter - which will attempt the first powered, controlled flight on another planet. (Photo by Patrick T. FALLON / AFP)
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Jennifer Trosper, Perseverance deputy project manager, stands for a portrait with a full scale model of the Mars 2020 Perseverance rover at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) on February 16, 2021 in Pasadena, California. - The Mars exploration rover will search for signs of ancient microbial life and collect rock samples for future return to Earth to study the red planet's geology and climate, paving the way for human exploration. Perseverance also carries the experimental Ingenuity Mars Helicopter - which will attempt the first powered, controlled flight on another planet. (Photo by Patrick T. FALLON / AFP)
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Jennifer Trosper, Perseverance deputy project manager, speaks during an interview about the Mars 2020 Perseverance rover at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) on February 16, 2021 in Pasadena, California. - The Mars exploration rover will search for signs of ancient microbial life and collect rock samples for future return to Earth to study the red planet's geology and climate, paving the way for human exploration. Perseverance also carries the experimental Ingenuity Mars Helicopter - which will attempt the first powered, controlled flight on another planet. (Photo by Patrick T. FALLON / AFP)
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A full scale model of the experimental Ingenuity Mars Helicopter, which will be carried under the Mars 2020 Perseverance rover, is displayed at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) on February 16, 2021 in Pasadena, California. - The Mars exploration rover will search for signs of ancient microbial life and collect rock samples for future return to Earth to study the red planet's geology and climate, paving the way for human exploration. Perseverance also carries the experimental Ingenuity Mars Helicopter - which will attempt the first powered, controlled flight on another planet. (Photo by Patrick T. FALLON / AFP)
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TOPSHOT A full scale model of the experimental Ingenuity Mars Helicopter, which will be carried under the Mars 2020 Perseverance rover, is displayed at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) on February 16, 2021 in Pasadena, California. - The Mars exploration rover will search for signs of ancient microbial life and collect rock samples for future return to Earth to study the red planet's geology and climate, paving the way for human exploration. Perseverance also carries the experimental Ingenuity Mars Helicopter - which will attempt the first powered, controlled flight on another planet. (Photo by Patrick T. FALLON / AFP)
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A full scale model of the Mars 2020 Perseverance rover is displayed at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) on February 16, 2021 in Pasadena, California. - The Mars exploration rover will search for signs of ancient microbial life and collect rock samples for future return to Earth to study the red planet's geology and climate, paving the way for human exploration. Perseverance also carries the experimental Ingenuity Mars Helicopter - which will attempt the first powered, controlled flight on another planet. (Photo by Patrick T. FALLON / AFP)
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A full scale model of the Mars 2020 Perseverance rover is displayed at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) on February 16, 2021 in Pasadena, California. - The Mars exploration rover will search for signs of ancient microbial life and collect rock samples for future return to Earth to study the red planet's geology and climate, paving the way for human exploration. Perseverance also carries the experimental Ingenuity Mars Helicopter - which will attempt the first powered, controlled flight on another planet. (Photo by Patrick T. FALLON / AFP)
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Jennifer Trosper, Perseverance deputy project manager, speaks during an interview about the Mars 2020 Perseverance rover at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) on February 16, 2021 in Pasadena, California. - The Mars exploration rover will search for signs of ancient microbial life and collect rock samples for future return to Earth to study the red planet's geology and climate, paving the way for human exploration. Perseverance also carries the experimental Ingenuity Mars Helicopter - which will attempt the first powered, controlled flight on another planet. (Photo by Patrick T. FALLON / AFP)
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Erisa Stilley, Perseverance entry, descent, and landing systems engineer, speaks during an interview about the Mars 2020 Perseverance rover at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) on February 16, 2021 in Pasadena, California. - The Mars exploration rover will search for signs of ancient microbial life and collect rock samples for future return to Earth to study the red planet's geology and climate, paving the way for human exploration. Perseverance also carries the experimental Ingenuity Mars Helicopter - which will attempt the first powered, controlled flight on another planet. (Photo by Patrick T. FALLON / AFP)
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A full scale model of the experimental Ingenuity Mars Helicopter, which will be carried under the Mars 2020 Perseverance rover, is displayed at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) on February 16, 2021 in Pasadena, California. - The Mars exploration rover will search for signs of ancient microbial life and collect rock samples for future return to Earth to study the red planet's geology and climate, paving the way for human exploration. Perseverance also carries the experimental Ingenuity Mars Helicopter - which will attempt the first powered, controlled flight on another planet. (Photo by Patrick T. FALLON / AFP)
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This NASA handout photo shows Ingenuity project manager, JPL, MiMi Aung, gives remarks during a NASA Perseverance rover mission engineering and technology overview, Tuesday, Feb. 16, 2021, at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. - The Perseverance Mars rover is due to land on Mars Thursday, Feb. 18, 2021. A key objective for Perseverance's mission on Mars is astrobiology, including the search for signs of ancient microbial life. The rover will characterize the planet's geology and past climate, pave the way for human exploration of the Red Planet, and be the first mission to collect and cache Martian rock and regolith. (Photo by Bill INGALLS / NASA / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - MANDATORY CREDIT "AFP PHOTO /NASA/BILL INGALLS/HANDOUT " - NO MARKETING - NO ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - DISTRIBUTED AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS
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This NASA handout photo shows Perseverance chief engineer, JPL, Adam Steltzner, shows a rover wheel during a NASA Perseverance rover mission engineering and technology overview, Tuesday, Feb. 16, 2021, at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. - The Perseverance Mars rover is due to land on Mars Thursday, Feb. 18, 2021. A key objective for Perseverance's mission on Mars is astrobiology, including the search for signs of ancient microbial life. The rover will characterize the planet's geology and past climate, pave the way for human exploration of the Red Planet, and be the first mission to collect and cache Martian rock and regolith. (Photo by Bill INGALLS / NASA / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - MANDATORY CREDIT "AFP PHOTO /NASA/BILL INGALLS/HANDOUT " - NO MARKETING - NO ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - DISTRIBUTED AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS
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(FILES) This handout file illustration obtained on March 5, 2020 courtesy of NASA shows the Mars rover Perseverence. - NASA on March 5, 2020 announced the name of its next Mars rover: Perseverance. It will be the fifth exploratory vehicle on the Red Planet following in the tire tracks of the similarly augustly titled Sojourner, Spirit, Opportunity, and Curiosity. The name was announced at an event at Lake Braddock Secondary School in Burke, Virginia, to congratulate the seventh grade student who picked it, Alex Mather. "Alex's entry captured the spirit of exploration," said Thomas Zurbuchen, associate administrator of the Science Mission Directorate. "Like every exploration mission before, our rover is going to face challenges, and it's going to make amazing discoveries." Like its forebears, Perserverance was named by school-age children in nationwide contests -- starting from Sojourner in 1997 to the Spirit and Opportunity rovers, which landed on Mars in 2004, to Curiosity, which has been exploring Mars since 2012. (Photo by Handout / NASA / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - MANDATORY CREDIT "AFP PHOTO / NASA" - NO MARKETING - NO ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - DISTRIBUTED AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS
RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - MANDATORY CREDIT "AFP PHOTO / NASA" - NO MARKETING - NO ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - DISTRIBUTED AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS
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Handout illustration shows NASA's Mars 2020 spacecraft carrying the Perseverance rover as it approaches Mars. Hundreds of critical events must execute perfectly and exactly on time for the rover to land on Mars safely on February 18, 2021. Solar panels powering the spacecraft are visible on the cruise state at the top. The cruise stage is attached to the aeroshell, which encloses the rover and descent stage. Entry, Descent, and Landing, or "EDL," begins when the aeroshell reaches the top of the Martian atmosphere, travelling nearly 12,500 mph (20,000 kph). It ends about seven minutes later, with Perseverance stationary on the Martian surface. Photo by NASA via ABACAPRESS.COM
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Handout illustration shows NASA's Perseverance rover casting off its spacecraft's cruise stage, minutes before entering the Martian atmosphere. Hundreds of critical events in the rover's Entry, Descent, and Landing sequence must execute perfectly and exactly on time for the rover to touch down on Mars safely on February 18, 2021. The cruise stage contains fuel tanks, solar panels, and other hardware needed during the trip to Mars. About 10 minutes before atmospheric entry, it separates from the aeroshell, which encloses the rover and descent stage. The aeroshell makes the trip to the surface on its own. Photo by NASA via ABACAPRESS.COM
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Handout illustration its heat shield facing the planet, NASA's Perseverance rover begins its descent through the Martian atmosphere in this illustration. Hundreds of critical events must execute perfectly and exactly on time for the rover to land on Mars safely on Feb. 18, 2021. Entry, Descent, and Landing, or "EDL," begins when the spacecraft reaches the top of the Martian atmosphere, travelling nearly 12,500 mph (20,000 kph). The aeroshell, which encloses the rover and descent stage, makes the trip to the surface on its own. The vehicle fires small thrusters on the backshell to reorient itself and make sure the heat shield is facing forward as it plunges into the atmosphere. Photo by NASA via ABACAPRESS.COM
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In this handout illustration of its descent to Mars, the spacecraft containing NASA's Perseverance rover slows down using the drag generated by its motion in the Martian atmosphere. Hundreds of critical events must execute perfectly and exactly on time for the rover to land on Mars safely on Feb. 18, 2021. Entry, Descent, and Landing, or "EDL," begins when the spacecraft reaches the top of the Martian atmosphere, travelling nearly 12,500 mph (20,000 kph). The cruise stage separates about 10 minutes before entering into the atmosphere, leaving the aeroshell, which encloses the rover and descent stage, to make the trip to the surface. The vehicle fires small thrusters on the backshell to reorient itself and make sure the heat shield is facing forward as it plunges into the atmosphere. As it descends through the atmosphere, the spacecraft fires these thrusters on its backshell to guide itself. The spacecraft uses the Martian atmosphere to brake, causing it to heat up dramatically. Peak heating occurs about 80 seconds after atmospheric entry, when the temperature at the external surface of the heat shield reaches about 2,370 degrees Fahrenheit (about 1,300 degrees Celsius). The rover is safe in the aeroshell, and reaches only about room temperature. Peak deceleration occurs about 10 seconds later (?90 seconds after atmospheric entry). The heat shield slows the spacecraft to under 1,000 mph (1,600 kph). Photo by NASA via ABACAPRESS.COM
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Handout illustration of NASA's Perseverance rover landing safely on Mars. Hundreds of critical events must execute perfectly and exactly on time for the rover to land safely on Feb. 18, 2021. Entry, Descent, and Landing, or "EDL," begins when the spacecraft reaches the top of the Martian atmosphere, travelling nearly 12,500 mph (20,000 kph). EDL ends about seven minutes after atmospheric entry, with Perseverance stationary on the Martian surface. At about 6,900 feet (2,100 meters) above the surface, the rover separates from the backshell, and fires up the descent stage engines. As the descent stage levels out and slows to its final descent speed of about 1.7 mph (2.7 kph), it initiates the "skycrane" maneuver. About 12 seconds before touchdown, roughly 66 feet (20 meters) above the surface, the descent stage lowers the rover on a set of cables about 21 feet (6.4 meters) long. The rover unstows its mobility system, locking its legs and wheels into landing position. As soon as the rover senses that its wheels have touched the ground, it cuts the cables connecting it to the descent stage. This frees the descent stage to fly off to make its own uncontrolled landing on the surface, a safe distance away from Perseverance. Photo by NASA via ABACAPRESS.COM
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Handout illustration of the aeroshell containing NASA's Perseverance rover guides itself towards the Martian surface as it descends through the atmosphere in this illustration. Hundreds of critical events must execute perfectly and exactly on time for the rover to land on Mars safely on Feb. 18, 2021. Entry, Descent, and Landing, or "EDL," begins when the spacecraft reaches the top of the Martian atmosphere, travelling nearly 12,500 mph (20,000 kph). The cruise stage separates about 10 minutes before entering into the atmosphere, leaving the aeroshell, which encloses the rover and descent stage, to make the trip to the surface. The vehicle fires small thrusters on the backshell to reorient itself and make sure the heat shield is facing forward. The spacecraft uses the Martian atmosphere to brake, causing it to heat up dramatically. Peak heating occurs about 80 seconds after atmospheric entry. The rover is safe in the aeroshell, and reaches only about room temperature. Peak deceleration occurs about 10 seconds later (?90 seconds after atmospheric entry). As it descends through the atmosphere, the spacecraft fires thrusters on its backshell to guide itself. This phase of the descent is referred to as "guided entry." Photo by NASA via ABACAPRESS.COM
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Handout illustration of NASA's Perseverance rover deploys a supersonic parachute from its aeroshell as it slows down before landing, in this artist's illustration. Hundreds of critical events must execute perfectly and exactly on time for the rover to land safely on Feb. 18, 2021. Entry, Descent, and Landing, or "EDL," begins when the spacecraft reaches the top of the Martian atmosphere, travelling nearly 12,500 mph (20,000 kph). EDL ends about seven minutes after atmospheric entry, with Perseverance stationary on the Martian surface.The parachute, 70.5 feet (21.5 meters) in diameter, deploys about 240 seconds after entry into the Martian atmosphere, at an altitude of about 7 miles (11 kilometers) and a velocity of about 940 mph (1,512 kph). The parachute slows the vehicle to about 200 mph (320 kph). Photo by NASA via ABACAPRESS.COM
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In this handout illustration, NASA's Perseverance rover gets its first look at the Martian surface below, after dropping its heat shield just under six minutes after entry into the Mars atmosphere. Hundreds of critical events must execute perfectly and exactly on time for the rover to land safely on Feb. 18, 2021. Entry, Descent, and Landing, or "EDL," begins when the spacecraft reaches the top of the Martian atmosphere, travelling nearly 12,500 mph (20,000 kph). EDL ends about seven minutes after atmospheric entry, with Perseverance stationary on the Martian surface. The parachute, 70.5 feet (21.5 meters) in diameter, deploys about 240 seconds after entry, at an altitude of about 7 miles (11 kilometers) and a velocity of about 940 mph (1,512 kph). The heat shield separates about 20 seconds, and the rover is exposed to the atmosphere of Mars for the first time. With a clear view of the ground, the landing radar and Terrain Relative Navigation system can begin determining the vehicle's precise altitude, position, and velocity in preparation for touchdown. Photo by NASA via ABACAPRESS.COM