What could possibly be more beautiful and exciting than scientists teaming up and working together for space exploration? Especially when their target is Mars, the one cosmic object that humanity has such high hopes that one day it will be able to colonize it.
But before scientists send any humans to the Red Planet, first they have to explore its environment as much as possible. And there are three missions scheduled this month that are aiming to do so. Who knows what dangers could lurk into the shadows while astronomers will be on their way to Mars, therefore any info could prove itself useful.
NASA’s Mars 2020 mission
The Atlas V rocket will launch from Cape Canaveral, Florida, along with the Perseverance rover on July 30. The rover will land on February 2021 within Mars’ Jezero Crater, which is a 28-mile-wide ancient river delta and lake.
The rover will put its seven onboard instruments to work for accomplishing several goals. Besides searching for signs of life that once existed on the Red Planet, Perseverance will also investigate the geology of the crater, it will search for subsurface water, and last but not least: it will collect and store rock samples for bringing back to Earth for close-observation.
China’s Tianwen-1 Mission
Tianwen-1 is the name of China’s upcoming mission to the Red Planet. The spacecraft will be launched on July 23, and it will start its exploration of Mars in February 2021. The mission includes sending a robotic structure to examine the composition of the Martian atmosphere, as well as to look for signs of past and present alien life.
UAE’s “Al Amal” Mission
Credit for the image: Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Center
The orbit of Mars shall be reached by UAE’s spacecraft in February 2021, and the launch is scheduled for July 16. Among the goals, the astronomers involved in the project aim to gather more info about what caused the atmospheric loss from Mars. Furthermore, they believe that the upcoming mission is about the future and survival of the entire Middle East.
It’s only a matter of time until the missions will start, and humanity will take another step towards the ultimate goal of searching for alien life.