NASA Chooses The Landing Site For Mars 2020 Rover Mission

NASA Chooses The Landing Site For Mars 2020 Rover Mission

NASA's still unnamed Mars 2020 rover will land in Jezero Crater where, scientists believe, a river delta was once located.

In a press release, NASA announced the landing site for the upcoming Mars 2020 Rover mission.

The 45-kilometre-wide crater has a "geologically rich terrain" that is ideal for analysing the planet's surface as well as investigating "signs of ancient habitable conditions", the National Aeronautics and Space Administration said. Scientists say the site is ideal because of its terrain with landforms dating from as far as long as 3.6 billion years ago.

The rover mission is scheduled to launch in July 2020 as NASA's next step in exploration of the Red Planet, the USA space agency said in a statement. It will be the same type as the Atlas that has brought the successful Mars Curiosity rover to the Red Planet.

In a conference call with the media, NASA's Associate Administrator Thomas Zurbuchen said that he has chosen the 28-mile- (45-kilometer) wide Jezero Crater and the mission is scheduled to launch in 2020.

NASA officially announces landing site of Mars 2020 rover, and it’s incredibly interesting

Mars 2020 should not only search for indications of previously livable conditions and earlier microbiological life.

Scientists have debated where to land the rover for the past four years, and whittled down their decision from more than 60 possible sites. Jezero Crater's ancient lake-delta system offers many promising sampling targets of at least five different kinds of rock.

Knowing more about the ability for life to exist on Mars in the distant past could inform us about how life evolved on Earth.

A similar discovery would mark a new era in the exploration of Mars, which started in 1965 when the United States launched its first mission to the red planet.

Forward-looking: While it remains to be seen whether or not humans will ever establish long-term colonies on Mars, that doesn't mean organizations like NASA aren't exploring the Red Planet. According to the orbital data, here you can find the exits to the surface is extremely ancient rocks, important for understanding the geological history of Mars.

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