What is the News? The China National Space Administration has announced that it will name its first Mars rover ‘Zhurong’.
- Zhurong is China’s first Mars rover mission. The rover is aboard the Tianwen-1 space probe.
- Launched in: The rover was launched in the Mars orbit Mission in February 2021 and is due to land in May.
- Named after: The rover is named after a traditional fire god. The rover’s title also fits with the Chinese name for Mars i.e. “Huo Xing” or fire star.
- Purpose: Zhurong carries multispectral cameras and instruments to analyze the composition of the rocks. It will also investigate subsurface characteristics with ground-penetrating radar.
- Landing Site: The expected landing site located in Utopia Planitia. It is the largest recognized impact basin on Mars.
- Significance: China would become the third country after the former Soviet Union and the United States to put a robot rover on Mars.
About Tianwen-1 mission:
- Tianwen-1 is China’s first Mars exploration mission. The name comes from the long poem “Tianwen,” meaning Questions to Heaven.
- Objectives: The mission has three objectives to fulfil:
- To orbit the red planet for comprehensive observation.
- Land on Martian soil and send a rover to roam around the landing site.
- To conduct investigations into geological structure, atmosphere, environment, soil and water of Mars.
Source: The Hindu