JAN 05, 2020 09:07 AM PST

It's Finally the Year of the Mars 2020 Mission

WRITTEN BY: Anthony Bouchard

It’s officially 2020, and with that in mind, anyone paying attention to NASA’s launch schedule should know already that the Mars 2020 rover is slated to launch this Summer so that we can study the red planet in our solar system with substantially greater detail than any Martian rover deployed before it.

Mars 2020 is built on almost the same chassis as the Curiosity rover, but internally, there are several upgrades that help it stand apart from its predecessor. For example, Mars 2020 comes with higher quality cameras, a sampling system that will drill into Mars’ surface and capture chunks of rock for analysis, and upgraded wheels that promise not to degrade as easily as the Curiosity rover’s have.

But it’s not just the rover itself that’s better, NASA says Mars 2020 will carry a solar-powered autonomous helicopter that will seek nearby points of interest for the rover to drive to. This is especially exciting because NASA has never sent a flying vehicle to another planet before, and it promises to advance space exploration into the next decade in ways we could only imagine several years ago.

Mars 2020 is currently sitting in a sterile clean room environment, and it’ll remain there until February when it gets shipped to Florida. Mars 2020 will then remain in Florida until it launches this Summer. The long wait ensures that the rover launches when Earth is at its closest proximity to Mars, a method of getting to the red planet that conserves fuel.

It should be interesting to see what we’ll learn about NASA from the Mars 2020 mission when it officially touches down in February 2021.

About the Author
  • Fascinated by scientific discoveries and media, Anthony found his way here at LabRoots, where he would be able to dabble in the two. Anthony is a technology junkie that has vast experience in computer systems and automobile mechanics, as opposite as those sound.
You May Also Like
JAN 17, 2020
Chemistry & Physics
JAN 17, 2020
2019 Nobel Prize in Physics: Exoplanets and the Evolution of Our Universe
This Tuesday, October 8th, the Nobel Prize committee announced the winners of this year's Physics Nobel. Canadian cosmologist James Peebles, alongside...
JAN 17, 2020
Space & Astronomy
JAN 17, 2020
Mars 2020 Rover Carries Full Weight on Wheels for First Time
NASA has been working on an advanced successor to the Martian Curiosity rover for quite some time. Dubbed the Mars 2020 rover, the upgraded SUV-sized auton...
JAN 17, 2020
Space & Astronomy
JAN 17, 2020
How Much Do You Know About Triton?
Far beyond the reach of the terrestrial and gas giant planets in our solar system exists an entirely different class of world known as ice giants. Uranus a...
JAN 17, 2020
Space & Astronomy
JAN 17, 2020
The Air Force's X-37B Plane Spent 780 Days in Space, But Why?
The United States Air Force regularly conducts top-secret missions and science experiments on behalf of the federal government. One of the military branch&...
JAN 17, 2020
Space & Astronomy
JAN 17, 2020
Boeing Launches Botched Starliner Demo Mission for NASA
Boeing finally moved forward with the initial un-crewed test launch of its Starliner Commercial Crew spacecraft for NASA at the end of this past week follo...
JAN 17, 2020
Space & Astronomy
JAN 17, 2020
Everything You Need to Know About Exoplanets
While most people are familiar with the planets residing in our solar system from lessons taught back in grade school, it’s important to remember tha...
Loading Comments...