New images from orbit and from the surface of Mars show the Zhurong rover in motion. China’s National Space Administration (CNSA) released new images and videos this week, and NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter has tracked the rover’s movements from above.
The picture above shows the wheel tracks left by the Zhurong rover.
A look at Zhurong’s abdomen in this image from a video. The lander seen in the distance. Photo credit: CNSA
“Since the morning of June 27th (.” The orbiter and rover are in good working order. (They report) on the safety of Mars to the Party and the Motherland, sending distant blessings at the time of the Chinese Communist Party’s centenary . “
July 1st marks the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Chinese Communist Party.
You may recall that on June 1, Zhurong placed a wireless camera on the ground and then returned to take a selfie of himself and the lander. This movement is now shown and documented in film material in which the rover drives backwards and apparently retreats into the sunset and maneuvers next to the lander.
The Tianwen-1 mission is China’s first Mars mission and consists of an orbiter, a lander and the rover. The spacecraft successfully entered Mars orbit in February after a seven-month flight after launching in July 2020.
In May, Zhurong drove from a landing platform to the surface of Mars. The surface mission is expected to take approximately three months.
This photo shows a panorama of the Martian landscape from the rover. Photo credit: CNSA.
Meanwhile, the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter’s HiRISE (High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment) camera has seen evidence of the rover’s movements from orbit. In this false color image, the landing site remains “clearly colored by the removal of Martian dust during the landing and the movement of the Zhurong rover towards the south can be seen,” wrote the HiRISE team.
This image from the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter’s HiRISE camera shows that the Zhurong rover has moved away from the lander. It was recorded on June 11, 2021. Photo credit: NASA / JPL / UArizona
HiRISE took pictures a few times (this one on June 11th, the other on June 6th) and with these two pictures the team was able to create a three-dimensional stereo view of the lander. This image should be viewed with red and blue glasses to see the lander and the gently rolling plains in southern Utopia Planitia on Mars.
Stereo view of the Chinese lander Tianwen-1 on Mars. View with red / blue glasses. Photo credit: NASA / JPL / UArizona.