The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has shared the photos of the first rock sample collected by the Perseverance Mars rover.
The rock sample has been taken by the Perseverance rover from the Jezero Crater of Mars. The Mars rover's first attempt failed to collect the rock sample, which prompted a second effort to try and collect it once more.
A tweet posted by the Perseverance rover's Twitter account calls the rock sample "the first in a one-of-a-kind Martian rock collection."
The rock sample will be taken to Earth by another mission scheduled to take place in the 2030s.
NASA Shares Photos of Perseverance's First Rock Sample
It’s official: I’ve now captured, sealed, and stored the first core sample ever drilled on another planet, in a quest to return samples to Earth. It’s the first in a one-of-a-kind Martian rock collection. #SamplingMars— NASA's Perseverance Mars Rover (@NASAPersevere) September 6, 2021
Read more: https://t.co/bs4Hd4Fzyw pic.twitter.com/2jwF7cOcMZ
NASA has shared the first photos of the first rock sample the Perseverance rover collected on Mars. The photos have been shared on Twitter by the Perseverance rover's account.
"It's official: I've now captured, sealed, and stored the first core sample ever drilled on another planet, in a quest to return samples to Earth," the tweet reads.
NASA likewise shared the news and photos via a press release posted on its official website.
"NASA's Perseverance rover today completed the collection of the first sample of Martian rock, a core from Jezero Crater slightly thicker than a pencil," according to NASA.
Per the press release, the Martian rock sample is now contained in an airtight titanium sample tube. The sample will be brought back to Earth by another mission that will take place in the 2030s along with others that the Perseverance rover has yet to collect, according to a report by Digital Trends.
Perseverance Rover's First Failed Attempt
The Perseverance rover failed to collect a rock sample during its first attempt early last month. The rock sample that the Perseverance rover was supposed to store crumbled away, rendering it useless for study.
Scientists working on the mission immediately planned for the Perseverance rover's second attempt to dig a hole on Mars in order to be able to collect a rock sample.
The Perseverance Mars Rover
Last July, the Perseverance rover and its companion, the Ingenuity helicopter, marked their first since their launch to space.
Both the Perseverance and the Ingenuity are part of the Mars 2020 Exploration Program that was launched on July 20, 2020. They touched down on the Jezero Crater of Mars last February.
One of the main tasks of the Perseverance rover is to collect rock samples of Mars. Its other main task is to look for signs of life in the Jezero Crater. It has been previously reported that the Jezero Crater was once home to a lake and river delta.
A joint campaign by NASA and the European Space Agency (ESA) will bring the samples collected by the Perseverance rover to Earth at some point in the 2030s.
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Written by Isabella James