China’s Zhurong Mars rover returns panorama forward of planetary blackout


China’s Mars rover Zhurong has produced a exceptional new panorama of its environment in Utopia Planitia to mark 100 days of exercise on the Red Planet as preparations proceed for the rover to spend greater than a month in secure mode this autumn.

The six-wheeled, solar-powered rover has lined 3,491 toes (1,064 meters) since rolling onto the Martian floor on May 22. But from mid-September to late October, the rover and its orbiting companion, Tianwen-1, will likely be in secure mode because the sun’s charged particles intervene with their communication with Earth.

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Related: China’s Tianwen 1 Mars rover mission in photos

A panorama of Utopia Planitia returned by the Zhurong rover in late August 2021. (Image credit score: CNSA/PEC)

In preparation for the break, Zhurong paused to take an excellent go searching with its panoramic digicam. The returned picture reveals the rover and its solar arrays and antenna near a dune, a function sort that mission scientists are eager for Zhurong to investigate. Plenty of distant options may be seen on the horizon of the panorama together with, above Zhurong’s antenna, the backshell from the rover’s touchdown in May. Zhurong visited the discarded gear up shut in July.

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