Mars Rover Captures Stunning New Images From The Planet's Surface
New video from NASA’s Mars Perseverance rover captures footage from the final minutes of its entry, descent, and landing on the Red Planet as the spacecraft plummeted, parachuted and then landed on the surface of Mars on Feb. 18.
The camera system covers the entirety of the descent process to Mars’ Jezero Crater from the moment of parachute inflation. The footage from high-definition cameras aboard the spacecraft starts seven miles above the surface, showing the deployment of the most massive parachute ever sent to another planet, and ends with the rover’s touchdown in the crater.
The audio embedded in the video comes from the mission control during entry, descent and landing.
The high-resolution video was captured by several cameras that are part of the rover's entry, descent and landing suite.
The views include a camera looking down from the spacecraft's descent stage (what NASA describes as a kind of rocket-powered jet pack that helps fly the rover to its landing site), a camera on the rover looking up at the descent stage, a camera on the top of the aeroshell (a capsule protecting the rover) looking up at that parachute, and a camera on the bottom of the rover looking down at the Martian surface. A microphone on the rover also has provided the first audio recording of sounds from Mars.
A key objective for Perseverance’s mission on Mars is astrobiology, including the search for signs of ancient microbial life. The rover will capture the planet’s geology and past climate and will collect Martian rock to help pave the way for human exploration of the Red Planet.