The European Space Agency’s (ESA) ExoMars Rover, set to arrive on the Red Planet by March 2021, has just been equipped with an “alien-hunting” camera designed to observe locations where evidence of past or current extraterrestrial life may be lurking. It’s officially called the PanCam camera array and is capable of seeing both visible light as well as near-infrared wavelengths. Read more for a video and additional information.
The PanCam is the most sophisticated scientific camera system yet to be sent to the surface of Mars and its wide angle cameras will do more than is possible with human eyes by identifying water-rich minerals and studying water and dust in the atmosphere. It’s also set to map the rover’s surroundings in 3D, while the High Resolution Camera adds rock texture as well as detail, and can watch for hazards underneath the rover.