Watching the Skies: Year since NASA’s Mars Perseverance Rover left Earth

Watching The Skies

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — It’s been one year since NASA’s Mars Perseverance Rover left Earth and began the journey to the red planet.

The rover launched off on July 3, 2020, and landed on Mars in February 2021. 

One of the main objectives of the rover is to collect rock samples from Mars. Now that some testing has been completed, the soil sample mission is beginning. 

It will take about 11 days for the Perseverance Rover to collect the first soil samples. Once the sample has been obtained, the rover will photograph and securely store it. A future mission to Mars will be responsible for bringing the rock sample back to Earth. 

With a clear and comfortable forecast ahead in West Michigan, there will be some perfect weather for late-night sky watchers. 

Keep your eyes open for the Perseid meteor shower. The peak of the shower will arrive around Aug. 12, but the shower is active now. 

Mercury and Mars are not currently visible. Venus is shining low on the horizon in the west shortly after the sun has set. Jupiter and Saturn are close to each other in the east southeast once the sun has gone down and twilight has ended.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Weather Tools