Two more rovers — NASA’s Perseverance and China’s Tianwen-1 — are set to land on Mars on February 18 and in May 2021 respectively.
NASA’s Perseverance Rover:
- The most sophisticated mission from an engineering standpoint, NASA’s Perseverance Rover, is en route to Mars and is set to land on Thursday at Jezero Crater, which was likely filled with water in the past.
- Perseverance is NASA’s 4th generation, Mars Rover
- The goal is to look for biosignatures in the dried-up lake bed at Jezero Crater.
- Tianwen-1, the first mission to Mars from China, successfully underwent orbital insertion on February 10. Tianwen-1 carries an orbiter, a lander, and a rover.
- China’s approach to landing a rover is somewhat different. Unlike NASA rovers, Tianwen-1 will orbit Mars for a few months before attempting to land in May this year.