The Zhurong rover successfully has landed on the Martian surface, and now it brings back the first of its findings. A video clip has been released by China's state-run CCTV news channel that feature's the rover's flight, descent, and first exploration on Martian soil. The video includes an audio clip, so you get to hear what sounds are like on Mars!
China pulled off its daring stunt to send their Tianwen-1 (translated to "Question to Heaven") in the state-funded independent mission to explore the planet Mars. As of June 27, the land rover Zhurong (translated name to "God of Fire") has completed its descent and has began its exploration on Martian territory.
Earlier reports said that Zhurong is a six-wheeled solar-powered robot equipped with two cameras, a Mars-Rover Subsurface Exploration Radar, Mars Magnetic Field Detector, and Mars Meteorology Monitor. It was sent with a mission to deeply and thoroughly analyze the Martian soil and its components.
China Mars Rover Zhurong Audio Recorded
With Zhurong beginning its exploration, Space reported a few interview responses from the Tianwen-1 research team. The system deputy chief designer, Jia Yang, said that the audio clip released with the video was the Mars rover Zhurong rotating on its rack atop Tianwen-1, implying sounds of different metals clashing. However, this is only the first of many audio recordings Zhurong is supposed to record.
Yang said, "The purpose we [installed] the recording device is to capture the sounds of wind on Mars during its windy weathers. We really want to hear how the winds sound like on a planet other than the Earth."
Liu Jizhong, the deputy commander for China's first Mars exploration program, also said that "With the [video, image, and audio] files we released this time, including those sounds recorded when our Mars rover left the lander, we are able to conduct in-depth analysis to the environment and condition of Mars, for example, the density of the atmosphere on the Mars."
Martian Surface Video and Audio
The official video release is posted online on YouTube. The video is two minutes and 44 seconds long. It is broken down to feature the "Parachute Releasing," "Lander-rover Combination Approaching Mars, Descending," "Lander-rover Combination Touching Down on Mars," "360-Degree Panorama of Landing Area of Tianwen-1 Mars Probe," "Rover Zhurong Working on Mars' Surface," "Decent Animation" and interview with the team.
Steve Spaleta edited the video for a more straightforward "real-time" preview on the camera. The audio is also greatly enhanced for better hearing. The edited video is available on this link.
The 530-lb Zhurong rover is expected to last around 90 Martian days, depending on environmental conditions. The Tianwen-1 orbiter, on the other hand, is expected to last a full Martian year, expected around 687 Earth days.
Zhurong will undoubtedly bring bigger and exciting discoveries in the coming months. Most of its discoveries might be available online through the Chinese official news media channel, the same one that uploaded the video above.
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