China's Mars rover travels 585 meters on red planet

Source: Xinhua| 2021-07-23 20:52:16|Editor: huaxia

BEIJING, July 23 (Xinhua) -- China's Mars rover Zhurong has traveled 585 meters on the surface of the red planet as of Friday, according to the Lunar Exploration and Space Program Center of the China National Space Administration.

On Friday, the Mars orbiter marked its first anniversary of operation. Now it is about 378 million km away from Earth. The delay of its one-way communication was around 21 minutes, said the center.

Both the rover and orbiter are working in normal conditions, with their subsystems operating normally.

China's Tianwen-1 spacecraft, consisting of the orbiter and the rover as well as a lander, was launched on July 23, 2020. The lander carrying the rover touched down in the southern part of Utopia Planitia, a vast plain in the northern hemisphere of Mars, on May 15.

As of Friday, Zhurong has been operating on the surface of Mars for 68 Martian days. A Martian day is approximately 40 minutes longer than a day on Earth.

Each Martian day, the navigation terrain camera onboard the rover Zhurong took images of terrains along the way. The subsurface radar and meteorological measuring instrument are also turned on for detection during the journey.

When the rover stops, the surface magnetic field detector turns on for detection.

The surface composition detector, multispectral camera and other payloads carry out the fixed-point detection when the rover encounters special landforms, such as rocks and sand dunes with high scientific detection value, during its journey on Mars.

This week, the rover Zhurong traveled to one of the dunes on its Mars expedition and took images of the dune landscape. Multiple devices also carried out exploration on the dune and its surrounding environment. Enditem