China publishes new images of Mars taken by the Jurong rover

China publishes new images of Mars taken by the Jurong rover

Named after the god of fire in Chinese mythology, the Jurong rover landed in the Utopia Planetia region of Mars on May 15. This is China’s first mission to Mars – making it the second country to land a spacecraft on the planet, after the United States.

The rover sent its first images to Mars in May, and a few days after its landing, it shows the spreading, flat slope where it arrived.
The new photos taken on Friday include a 360-degree panorama of the landing area, made up of a number of photos taken by the craft after it landed before starting to move to the area, according to the state news agency. Xinhua. Another image showed the orange surface of Mars, with scattered rocks, a circular crater on the other side and sand dunes in the distance.

The third picture shows the Chinese flag on the landing platform. The rover also took a selfie using a wireless camera that showed the stretching solar panels and a small Chinese flag on its devices.

The six-wheeled solar-powered rover will last for three months, during which it will search for signs or evidence of ancient life on Mars. While the probe explores the planet, the probe also makes scientific detection.

“China will publish relevant scientific data in time so that humanity can share in the fruits of the development of space exploration in the country,” Zhang Kejian, head of China’s National Space Agency, said in a report to Xinhua.

China’s Mars mission has managed to enter the planet’s orbit and land a spacecraft that can cross the surface of Mars once. It took NASA several missions to complete those difficult steps, albeit decades earlier than China, between 1971 and 1997.

China launched its Tianwen-1 probe last July, which carried Zhurong and other equipment, along with two other international missions to Mars: NASA’s Perseverance Probe and the UAE’s Hope Probe.

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All three missions were launched around the same time due to the alignment between Mars and Earth on the same side of the Sun, making a more efficient trip to the Red Planet.

While Zhurong is not as technologically advanced as the tenacity of NASA, which is currently roaming Mars, her presence sends a clear signal that Chinese space capabilities are catching up with the United States.

Chinese astronauts have long been barred from entering the International Space Station – and one of the country’s ambitions is to build its own space station. In April, it came close to achieving that goal and successfully launched the first unit at the planned facility.

The nuclear module is currently the largest spacecraft developed by China. But the station must consist of several units that launch at different times; According to Chinese state media, the plant may be ready to be fully operational by the end of 2022.

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