Chinese state media reported on Friday that China has landed on Mars. The landing represents a major step for China’s ongoing successful space research.
The Tianwen-1 spacecraft took off from the Chinese province of Hainan in July last year and has now managed to make a seven-minute landing. On Friday, the National Space Administration of China announced that the flight had gone well and that it had already managed to collect a large amount of scientific data and images.
The second country to succeed
The aim of the trip, China’s first trip to Mars, is to explore the planet’s climate and geology. Before that, only NASA was able to land and control robots on the planet. They landed on Utopia Planitia, a flat part of Mars, where they managed to launch the solar powered robot Zhurong.
The robot weighs 240 kg completely and is equipped with two cameras, a detection radar, a magnetic field detector and a meteorological screen. The plan is to stay for three months to explore and collect data.
“The main mission of Tianwen-1 is to conduct a global and comprehensive survey of the entire planet from orbit, and to allow the robot to conduct more detailed surveys of the Earth with high accuracy and precision,” the mission researchers wrote in the journal. Natural Astronomy last year.
The successful landing represents the latest development in a succession of rapid advances in space research in China. It also became the first country in history to successfully land and operate a robot on the far side of the moon in 2019.
Focus remains on the moon
But despite the ambitious trip to Mars, China’s focus remains on the moon. Earlier this year, China announced plans to build a space station and a moon base with Russia.
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