NASA's Perseverance rover collects the first-ever rock sample from the planet Mars at the Jerezo crater.
In a first-ever for Humankind, NASA's Perseverance Mars rover collects a sample of Martian rock at the Jerezo crater on the planet Mars. The Mission Controllers confirmed the historic milestone at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in southern California.
The sample, slightly thicker than a pencil, was extracted from a flat, briefcase-sized rock named "Rochette" at the Jerezo crater. The rotary-percussive drill at the end of the Perseverance rover's robotic arm collected the sample and placed it in an airtight titanium tube for future retrieval. The rover Perseverance confirmed the collection of the sample by using its camera to send a picture back to the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in southern California before closing the tube.
In subsequent space missions organized by NASA and the European Space Agency (ESA), this Martian rock sample and samples to be collected will be retrieved in the future.
A key objective of the Perseverance rover's mission on the red planet is astrobiology, including the search for ancient life on the planet. The rover will also study and characterize the planet's geology and past climatic conditions. This mission will be instrumental for future human exploration of Mars and will be the first mission to collect and cache Martian rock, soil, and dust samples.