Perseverance rover: Google create animation to celebrate landing
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At around 9pm on February 18, Perseverance’s seven-month journey through the solar system came to an end when it successfully landed on Mars. The landing went as well as could be expected, despite fears it could crash. These fears quickly dissipated when confidence began to build as it broke through the atmosphere, with all technical milestones going off without a hitch.
Large cheers erupted in NASA’s control room as news of the successful landing was confirmed.
Many were quick to congratulate NASA on the achievement, including the likes of Elon Musk, Neil deGrasse Tyson and US President Joe Biden.
Now, Google is in on the act and has released a rather secretive way of celebrating the achievement.
To see Google’s commemoration of the event, simply go to the search engine and type in ‘NASA Perseverance’.
The usual NASA websites will pop up, but fireworks will be seen dazzling through the screen for a few seconds.
Perseverance sent back its first high definition images of Mars on February 19.
One of the images is of the machine lowering to the surface following its entry into the Martian atmosphere.
The image shows cables attached to the rover, which stem from the jet rockets which helped its descent.
According to a tweet from the NASA-run Perseverance Twitter account, the image was taken just moments before it touched down.
Another image from Perseverance shows one of its wheels on Mars’ dusty terrain.
A tweet from the NASA-run Perseverance Twitter account said: “I love rocks. Look at these right next to my wheel.
“Are they volcanic or sedimentary? What story do they tell? Can’t wait to find out.”
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A third shows a landscape of Mars, with such fine detail that you can spot individual rocks on the surface.
NASA said in a statement: “This is the first high-resolution, colour image to be sent back by the Hazard Cameras (Hazcams) on the underside of NASA’s Perseverance Mars rover after its landing on Feb. 18, 2021.
“A key objective for Perseverance’s mission on Mars is astrobiology, including the search for signs of ancient microbial life.
“The rover will characterize the planet’s geology and past climate, pave the way for human exploration of the Red Planet, and be the first mission to collect and cache Martian rock and regolith (broken rock and dust).”
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