NASA publishes the first video of the Perseverance rover landing on Mars and broadcasts a soundtrack from the red planet!
Sylvie Claire / February 23, 2021
NASA released on Monday a spectacular video of the landing of its Perseverance rover, the first of its kind, after the mission's arrival on Mars on Thursday in search of ancient life.
A little more than three minutes long, the published video unveils images from several cameras located at different places on the module, after its entry into the Martian atmosphere: one shows the deployment of the supersonic parachute, another, located under the rover, the approaching Martian ground, and two other views show the rover gradually deposited on the ground, suspended by three cables.
This is the first time we've been able to capture an event such as a landing on Mars, said Michael Watkins, director of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory where the rover was built, at a press conference. It's really fantastic.
These images and videos are what we've been dreaming of for years, added Allen Chen, who was in charge of the landing for NASA. They will help NASA teams better understand what happens during such a landing.
The rover was protected by a heat shield at its entry, at a speed of 20,000 km/h, into the atmosphere. We can also see this shield dropped on the surface of Mars on the video.
Eight retrorockets then finished slowing down the vehicle, and we can see Martian dust being propelled under their effect.
The cameras are standard commercial cameras, which have been added without being connected to the rover system in order not to disturb it.
The landing maneuver was perilous and the chosen site, the crater of Jezero, the riskiest ever attempted, because of its relief.
NASA released on Monday a sound recorded by a microphone on Mars, a first achieved thanks to the American rover Perseverance, which successfully landed on the Red Planet last week.
In the excerpt, one can hear a shrill sound produced by the rover, but also clearly the Martian wind. Yes, you just heard a gust of wind on the surface of Mars, captured by the microphone and sent back to Earth, said Dave Gruel, who is in charge of this equipment for NASA. These are the first sounds recorded on the surface of Mars, he added.