NASA’s Perseverance Mars rover has now been attached to the top of the rocket headed toward the Red Planet this summer. It’s encased in the nose cone for protection during launch, and along with the rover, the aeroshell, cruise stage, as well as descent stage were affixed to a United Launch Alliance Atlas V booster on Tuesday, July 7, at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Central Florida. Read more for a video and additional information.
The Mars 2020 Perseverance rover’s astrobiology mission aims to find signs of ancient microbial life on the Red Planet, while characterizing the planet’s climate and geology. This will eventually pave the way for human exploration of planet, and be the first planetary mission to collect and cache Martian rock and regolith.
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I have seen my fair share of spacecraft being lifted onto rockets. But this one is special because there are so many people who contributed to this moment. To each one of them I want to say, we got here together, and we’ll make it to Mars the same way,” said John McNamee, project manager for the Mars 2020 Perseverance rover mission at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Southern California.