The Persevering Rover, which has been on the surface of Mars for just over six months, has already started all stages of its NASA-planned mission. In early August, scientists performed one of the most important tasks, like digging a hole in the rock and collecting and securing a sample that will be delivered to Earth in the future (as part of another mission).
This piece failed the first time. NASA found that after collecting the rock material, for unknown reasons, it did not end up in a titanium test tube. The space agency began to analyze the problem and decided to make another attempt. But this time a different object was chosen from which the material was taken.
The chariot of perseverance took a soil sample on Mars
The rock selected for research is called “Rochette” and is visible in the main image of this text. On September 1, Perseverance made a hole in it (also shown in the photo above) and had a containment crisis. Over the next few days, scientists attempted to determine whether the test tube actually contained enough rock powder.
To this end, the rover’s cameras took several photos of the container. On one of them (below), inside the auger (at the same time as it digs a hole and takes rock material), the sample taken is visible. As explained by NASA, the rock is inside the gold core and has a diameter slightly larger than a pencil.
Image of a sample taken from Mars taken on September 1, 2021 Pied. NASA / JPL-Caltech / ASU / MSSS
Unfortunately, the following photos have not confirmed its existence due to the lack of sunlight. The researchers therefore decided to wait with the announcement of the success. Until there. On Sunday, NASA admitted that the sample was collected correctly.
Success was confirmed after receiving the last image (below) sent by the Perseverance rover:
Scientists will now begin to analyze the initial sample and then seal and secure the tube. The same will happen with rock material from the next 42 wells NASA wants to drill. After that, the Perseverance rover will leave the hardware secure on Mars, and in the future, the U.S. Agency and the European Space Agency plan to send a mission to Mars to collect samples and bring them back to Earth with them.