The Mars Perseverance rover mission is part of NASA’s Mars Exploration Program, a long-term effort of robotic exploration of the Red Planet. The Mars Perseverance mission addresses high-priority science goals for Mars exploration, including key questions about the potential for life on Mars. The mission takes the next step by not only seeking signs of habitable conditions on Mars in the ancient past, but also searching for signs of past microbial life itself. The mission is timed for a launch opportunity in July/August 2020 when Earth and Mars are in good positions relative to each other for landing on Mars. That is, it takes less power to travel to Mars at this time, compared to other times when Earth and Mars are in different positions in their orbits.
NASA is about to launch the Mars 2020 mission – and now is the time to get excited! The Perseverance rover will launch between July 17-August 11, 2020, and will land on Mars in February 2021. Hear from NASA Mars scientists, learn some activities you can conduct online or in-person, and make plans to hold your own virtual (or in-person) launch or landing parties!