NASA’s Perseverance rover was sent to Mars with the purpose of collecting samples from the planet’s soil and for seeking signs of past life. Since scientists are pretty sure that no little green men are currently living on the Red Planet, the possibility for microbial organisms remains plausible.
Until astronomers ever discover signs of life on our neighboring planet, the Perseverance rover has just marked another important achievement. NASA’s rover has collected samples from a rock on Mars, according to The Hill.
Mars’ climate history and geography could be reflected in the rock samples
Perseverance drilled in a rock that was about the size of a computer. It was also part of a ridgeline that measures more than a mile long.
Collecting the new sample of Martian rock is important for several reasons. Excluding the part of revealing possible signs of ancient microbial life present on the Red Planet, aspects related to both the geography and climate of Mars could be revealed as well. A rotary percussive drill is used for collecting the samples, which can run a seven-foot robotic arm able to extract samples.
Jennifer Trosper, who is the project manager at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory of NASA from Southern California, declared as quoted by the space agency’s official website:
The project got its first cored rock under its belt, and that’s a phenomenal accomplishment,
The team determined a location, and selected and cored a viable and scientifically valuable rock. We did what we came to do. We will work through this small hiccup with the lighting conditions in the images and remain encouraged that there is sample in this tube.
The minimum distance that separates Earth from Mars is 33.9 million miles (54.6 million kilometers), meaning that astronauts would need plenty of time and fuel to go to the Red Planet.