Zhurong: China’s first Mars rover:
China’s first Mars rover will be named Zhurong after a traditional fire god.
- The rover is aboard the Tianwen-1 probe that arrived in Mars orbit on February 24 and is due to land in May to look for evidence of life.
- China in 2019 became the first country to land a space probe on the little-explored far side of the moon and in December returned lunar rocks to Earth for the first time since the 1970s.
- China would become the third country after the former Soviet Union and the United States to put a robot rover on Mars.
- China’s first Mars probe is called Tianwen-1 (formerly Huoxing 1).
- The spacecraft consists of an orbiter, a lander, and a rover.
- Launched in 2020 on a Long March 5 rocket from Xichang, China.
- Landing site: Somewhere in Utopia Planitia, a vast plain in Mars’ northern latitudes and the same place NASA’s Viking 2 mission landed in the 1970s.