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NASA’s Perseverance Rover Marks Its 1,000th Day On Mars

NASA’s Perseverance rover has passed a major milestone on the Red Planet. The rover will explore its surroundings for 1,000 sols, or Martian days. One sol is slightly longer than an earthly day – 24 hours 37 minutes.
The Perseverance rover arrived on the Red Planet on February 18, 2021. He was kept company by the 1.8 kg Ingenuity helicopter. The helicopter was not tasked with participating in reconnaissance, but its endurance turned out to be so great that the small rotorcraft, one way or another, had to help the rover in exploring the area.
The Jezero Crater, where the rover landed, was formed by an asteroid impact on Mars 4 billion years ago. Millions of years after this, streams of water, which was then still on the planet, rushed into it. Ultimately, a lake up to 35 km across formed on the site of the crater. Satellite reconnaissance has shown that there is enough sediment in the crater area that may contain traces of past biological life on Mars.
It collected a little more than two dozen samples. Among the most promising for searching for signs of biological life are samples with phosphates (on Earth, phosphorus is an obligatory and abundant companion of life), and others with silica. On our planet, the oldest fossils are usually found in silica, since it serves as a kind of preservative. Something similar is expected on Mars.
In addition to sophisticated equipment for taking soil samples and analyzing them, Perseverance has several cameras for filming and two microphones for recording sound. The payload also includes the Ingenuity unmanned aerial vehicle, which observes the surface of Mars from above and helps the rover chart its path.

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