NASA announced that the Perseverance probe has been testing devices and equipment and has begun its main mission – the search for signs of life on the Red Planet.
And the most important working aid of the Perseverance probe is a two meter long robotic arm, on which many devices and equipment are installed, the most important of which is the PIXL X-ray chemical analyzer, which, with X-rays and ultraviolet, is used rays, will analyze the composition of the rocks, and the camera nearby will allow it to take photographs of the samples with sufficient magnification to detect signs that have indicated existing microbes. Scientists believe that the Jezero crater where the probe landed in the past was a lake. So if it has life, there will be evidence of its existence.
Experts indicate that the tests of the PIXL device were successful on Earth, and they hope that the results of their work on the Red Planet will be successful and determine the composition of Martian dust with high accuracy.
“PIXL’s beam is so narrow that it can analyze an object the size of a piece of salt, allowing the chemicals it detects to attach to specific rock tissue,” said Abigail Allwood, PIXL team leader at JPL. Because the texture of the rocks indicates its origin. For example, the texture of ancient rocks on earth (stromatolites) is multiple because they are sedimentary rocks formed by bacteria. This is a clear sign of old life.
Important samples collected by the probe are placed in a metal tube and returned to Earth by NASA’s joint mission with the European Space Agency, which will be sent to Mars in 2026.
NASA experts point out that knowing the structure and conditions of the Jezero crater floor and its ancient conditions will provide important information about the early days of the Red Planet’s “childhood” and how it originated. .
Source: RIA Novosti