NASA has unveiled next Mars Rover described as “Out of the World” research station destined for the red planet in 2020 in search of aliens or microbial life beneath the water sources found already with its unique capability to collect core samples and possibly return them Earth in the future.
The rover will conduct geological assessments of its landing site on Mars, determine the habitability of the environment, search for signs of ancient Martian life, besides assessing hazards for future human explorers.
The futuristic Mars rover on display at the Kennedy Space Centre Visitor Complex of NASA as part of its “Summer of Mars” promotion was presented by ISS astronaut Scott Kelly, who had shared his one-year long experiences from the International Space Station via Twitter.
Opening the program, Rebecca Shireman of the Kennedy visitor complex said, “We hope this will encourage young people to want to learn more about being a part of the effort to go to Mars.”
The next generation Mars Rover was buil by Parker Brothers Concepts of Florida, operating on an electric motor, powered by solar panels and a 700-volt battery.
The rover has two parts, with the front part which separates after landing on the Mars surface to conduct survey and collect core samples for research while the second acts as a permanent lab to coordinate communications.
The moving part has been designed for scouting with a radio and GPS navigation. While this is merely a prot-type, improvements will be made to incorporate other elements for its successful operations on Mars.
Moreover, the future robotic Rover also requires to fly mini-aircrat or balloons on the red plaet to survey the distant lands and also the required machinery to dig deep underneath the ground to explore the geology of the planet, the presence of water, and maybe even clues about whether Mars was ever a habitat for life.
NASA’s upcoming Mars 2020 Rover will be landed at one of the three potential locations on the Red Planet which include Northeast Syrtis (a very ancient portion of Mars’ surface), Jezero crater, (once home to an ancient Martian lake), and Columbia Hills (potentially home to an ancient hot spring, explored by NASA’s Spirit rover).
Mars 2020 is targeted for launch in July 2020 aboard an Atlas V 541 rocket from Space Launch Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida.