China lands on Mars in latest advance for its space program – Washington, District of Columbia

Washington, District of Columbia 2021-05-15 00:19:46 –

China landed a spacecraft on Mars for the first time with the latest advances in space programs.

Beijing (AP) — China landed a spacecraft on Mars for the first time on Saturday. This is the latest advance for ambitious goals in space, a technically challenging feat that is more difficult than a lunar landing.

The plan requires Rover to stay on the lander for a few days of diagnostic testing, then roll a ramp to explore the icy region of Mars known as the Utopia Planitia. Join the American Rover, who arrived on the Red Planet in February.

China’s first landing on Mars follows last month’s launch of the main section, a permanent space station, and a mission to reclaim rocks from the moon at the end of last year.

Xinhua News Agency announced that it has landed on one of its social media accounts, saying, “China has made its first mark on Mars. This is an important step for our space exploration.”

The United States has made nine successful landings on Mars since 1976. The Soviet Union landed on Mars in 1971, but the mission failed because the aircraft stopped transmitting information shortly after landing.

A rover and a small helicopter from the United States that landed in February are currently exploring Mars. NASA expects Rover to collect its first sample in July to return to Earth within 10 years.

China has landed on the Moon before, but landing on Mars is a much more difficult task. Spacecraft must use shields to protect against the scorching heat of re-entry and use both retrorocket rockets and parachutes at sufficient speed to prevent crash landing. Parachutes and rockets must be deployed at the exact time to land at the designated location. Only a mini retro rocket is needed for landing on the moon, and a parachute is enough to return to Earth.

According to Xinhua, the approach capsule entered the atmosphere of Mars at an altitude of 125 km (80 miles) and began what is called the “most dangerous stage of the entire mission.”

According to Xinhua, a 200-square-meter (2,150-square-foot) parachute was deployed, then dumped, and then a retrorocket was fired, bringing the aircraft’s speed to near zero. The aircraft floated about 100 meters (330 feet) above the surface of the water to identify obstacles before landing on the four buffer legs.

“There was only one chance at each step and the actions were closely related. If anything went wrong, the landing would have failed,” said Geng Yan, an employee of the China National Space Administration. ..

According to the State Department of Science, the touchdown was at 7:18 am Beijing time (23:18 GMT, 7:18 pm EST). Technology and industry for national defense. The distance between Earth and Mars has caused a delay in mission management in Beijing to confirm its success.

Xi Jinping Jintao of China, in a letter of congratulations to the mission team, is an important step in the journey “of exploration between our country of the planet the landing, to achieve the leap from the earth the moon to the planetary system, Left a trace of the Chinese on Mars. For the first time …. Homeland and people always remember your outstanding feat! “

“We look forward to working with the global scientific community to make an important contribution to the understanding of humanity’s red planet,” said Thomas Zurbuchen, Associate Administrator at NASA.

China’s Mars landing was a top trend topic for Weibo, the leading social media platform, as people expressed both excitement and pride.

The Tianwen-1 spacecraft has been orbiting Mars since February, when it arrived after a six-and-a-half-month journey from Earth. Xinhua described this mission as China’s first planetary exploration.

Named after the Chinese Fire God Zhurong, the Rover will be deployed for 90 days in search of evidence of life. It is about the size of a small car and is equipped with a ground penetrating radar, a laser, and sensors that measure the atmosphere and magnetic spheres.

China’s space program has been more cautious than the United States and the Soviet Union during the height of the space race.

The launch of the space station’s main module in April is the first of 11 planned missions to build and prepare the space station and dispatch three crew members by the end of next year. During its success, the uncontrolled return of the launch vehicle to Earth has elicited international criticism, including from NASA administrator Bill Nelson.

China says it wants to land people on the moon and perhaps build a scientific foundation there. The timeline for such projects has not been announced. Spaceplanes are also reported to be under development.


Associated Press researcher Henry Hou, news assistant Caroline Chen, and video journalist Sam McNeil contributed to this report.

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