NASA’s newest Mars rover has successfully collected its first rock sample for return to Earth. Initial photos taken Wednesday show a sample in the tube but later images were inconclusive because of poor lighting, NASA said in a news release. The rock sample — about the thickness of a pencil — could have slipped down deeper into the tube during a series of planned vibrations, it said.
- Rock sample was termed as the perfect core sample by the perseverance rover’s chief engineer, Adam Steltzner.
- In earlier attempt, Perseverance drilled into much softer rock to crumble the sample, but it didn’t get inside the titanium tube. Then the rover drove a half-mile for a better sampling spot to drill again.
- Perseverance arrived at the Jezero Crater of Mars in February 2021.
- The Jezero Crater is believed to be the home of a lush lake-bed and river delta billions of years ago.
- Thus, this mission was launched in search of rocks that could reveal about ancient life.
- NASA has planned to launch more spacecraft to get samples collected by Perseverance.