UNITED STATES: The NASA Perseverance rover on Mars recently obtained its 14th sample of rock through drilling. But the rover’s sampling mechanism is malfunctioning since it hasn’t been able to cap and seal the sample tube.
In a tweet on Tuesday, NASA provided an update from the perspective of the rover, saying, “I gathered my fourteenth rock core over the weekend, but I was unable to close the sample container. Although the sample is securely kept inside my caching assembly, there is still work to do to cap and seal the tube.”
Perseverance is accumulating a collection of Martian rocks that NASA plans to retrieve and transport back to Earth for in-depth analysis. A pencil-thick bit of rock is cored out, put into a tube, and the tube is sealed to keep the sample safe and prevent contamination.
Perseverance rover has been collecting paired samples, and scientists are particularly interested in the rocks it discovered in the Jezero Crater’s ancient river delta zone. While some of those rocks show traces of organic content, deeper examination and in-person analysis are necessary to determine whether they also show indicators of ancient microbial life.
In no time at all, the rover had sealed and tucked away its successful 13th and lucky rock sample. The 13th and 14th samples originated from an area close to one another, according to NASA photos.
Operating a robotic mobile laboratory on a hostile planet is not simple. Troubleshooting is a part of life. In its sample system, Perseverance has already dealt with stones and stringy mystery material.
The Perseverance rover team has managed Percy through all of its difficulties thus far, and they will attempt to resolve this most recent hiccup.