The US rover “Perseverance” has sent the first videos of its landing and audio recordings from Mars to Earth. Such video and sound recordings have never been made before, announced the US space agency NASA on Monday at a press conference. “ The se videos are amazing,” said NASA manager Mike Watkins. “We have all watched them many, many times over the weekend.”
The videos show the last eleven kilometers of the route of “Perseverance” (in German about: stamina). For example, you can see how the parachute opens. The surface on which the rover lands is also visible. The microphones on board the rover did not send any useful data from the landing – but later sent the first ever recorded sound recordings from the surface of Mars, it said. Among other things, something can be heard on them that sounds like a gust of wind. New photos were also published.
Small helicopter undocks from the rover
The small “Ingenuity” helicopter on board the rover had previously sent its first status report to the control center in Pasadena, California – and according to NASA experts, it “seems to be working perfectly”. “Ingenuity” (in German: ingenuity) is still attached to the underside of “Perseverance”. But in 30 to 60 days the helicopter is supposed to explore Mars from a bird’s eye view. It would be the first flight of an aircraft over another planet.
The rover “Perseverance”, weighing around 1,000 kilograms and the size of a small car, landed on Thursday – after 203 days of flight and 472 million kilometers – with a risky maneuver in a dry lake called “Jezero Crater”. “Perseverance” is to investigate this lake with a diameter of around 45 kilometers over the next two years.
The development and construction of the approximately 2.5 billion dollars (about 2.2 billion euros) rover had taken eight years. He is supposed to search for traces of previous microbial life on Mars and to research the climate and geology of the planet.