After a failed attempt last month, NASA’s Persevers spacecraft drilled a perfect rock on the red planet and took a picture. As a result, a big step has been taken towards the goal that one day, we will bring rock samples to Earth and find traces of ancient microbial life in them.
Drilling work was carried out by Perseverance on September 1, after selecting a large, thick rock, which NASA researchers called “Rochet”.
The boulder lies on a ridge overlooking the bottom of the Ezra Crater, where it has withstood elements from Mars for millions of years.
The Persecution group is looking for just such resilience; A few weeks ago, an attempt to take drilling specimens by a mausoleum failed because the stone specimen turned out to be too fragile and was scattered.
However, new photos of Rochet drilling operation show that this time everything went well.
“You can clearly see a sample of rock taken in the rover collecting pipe,” said Kenneth Farley, a professor of geochemistry at the California Institute of Technology and a Perseverance project scientist.
Approximately a pencil thickness pattern will be maintained by Perseverance throughout the mission; As part of the mission, he will explore the bottom of a once-existing and currently dried-up lake in Lake Crater.
However, one day, probably ten years later, Perseverance will place all the collected specimens on the land of Mars, from where they will be picked up by a new (not yet created) spacecraft and placed in a small rocket.
After that, this rocket will bring samples to Earth where scientists will study them in such detail that Perseverance itself would never have been able to.
This mission is unlikely to be completed until the 2030s. Meanwhile, Perseverance continues to roam and explore the Ezero Crater.