The robotic explorer so far referred to as “Mars-2020" is the fifth rover NASA will send to the Red Planet after Soderner (1997), “Spirit” and “Opportunity” (2004) and “Curiosity” (2012).
The name of the rover was announced at a school in Burke, Virginia, a graduate of which was his “godfather” Alex Mader. The schoolboy also read his winning essay live on NASA television. “We are explorers and will undoubtedly encounter obstacles on our way to Mars. However, we can show perseverance. We - not as a nation, but as people, will not give up. The human race will stand in the future too,” wrote Alex Mader, who wants to become an engineer and work for NASA.
"Alex's proposal embodies the research spirit. As in all previous missions, our rover will have to overcome obstacles and make extraordinary discoveries,” says NASA's deputy head of science division Thomas Tsurbuchen.
Like its predecessors, Perciviarans received its name after a competition organized among students. Of 28,000 proposals, nearly 4700 volunteer judges named 155 semi-finalists. Among them, nine finalists were selected, subjected to a public vote on the NASA site. The nine names, among them Bravery, Courage, Strength of Spirit, Perseverance, embody positive human qualities.
In addition to the honor of becoming a godfather, Alex Mader has also received an invitation to attend the Perciviarans launch with his family in mid-summer. The rover will be launched from Cape Canaveral. Under plan, Perciviarans is due to land at Jezero Crater at the Martian equator in February 2021.
The rover has two main goals - to search for traces of ancient microbial life and to collect samples. They will be hermetically sealed in a container inside it pending a future joint Martian mission by NASA and the European Space Agency (ESA) to bring them back to Earth.
"Perciviarans” is about the size of a car (it is three meters long and 2.7 meters wide) and like “Curiosity” has six wheels, allowing it to overcome rocks. The rover will draw power from a nuclear minireactor.
NASA's new rover is called Perciviarans
NASA's new rover took hold of a name - “Perciviarans” (“Perseverance”), world agencies report.tags:
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Administrator • 2020-05-27 03:38:08