BREVARD COUNTY, Fla .– Photo giveaways keep coming from Perseverance, the NASA rover that landed on Mars last week.
Over the weekend, the spacecraft transmitted video footage it took of its spectacular landing on the Martian surface. This is the first time that NASA has captured a video of the perilous “7 Minutes of Terror” documenting the descent and landing of the spacecraft on Mars.
The first of its kind footage shows the parachute’s massive inflation, the fall of the heat shield, and finally the point of view of the rover as it flies over the Martian surface and settles into a dusty crater.
“It gives me goosebumps every time I see it. It’s just amazing, ”said Matt Wallace, deputy director of Project Perseverance. “I have been waiting for 25 years for the opportunity to see a spacecraft land on Mars. It was worth the wait. “
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The camera’s microphone did not pick up sound during the landing, but it did record a gust of wind after it landed, the first sounds ever recorded on Mars.
Audio from the Red Planet was distributed over the Rover’s Twitter account, which quickly gathered 2.2 million followers.
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On Monday, NASA also released the mission’s first panorama of the rover’s landing site as well as more than 23,000 images of the vehicle descending to the surface of Mars which can be downloaded from the NASA website.
“This video of the Perseverance descent is the closest you can get to landing on Mars without donning a pressure suit,” said Thomas Zurbuchen, NASA associate administrator for science. “This should become mandatory for young women and men who want to not only explore other worlds and build the spacecraft that will take them there, but also be part of the various teams who all achieve the bold goals of our future.
Perseverance, the most advanced rover to travel to Mars, landed safely in Jezero Crater on Thursday – a key step in looking for signs of past life on the planet.
Contributor: Jay Cannon, USA TODAY
Follow journalist Rachael Joy on Twitter @Rachael_Joy
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