NASA’s Perseverance rover spotted a mysterious silver object stuck between some rocks on Mars. The space agency revealed that the anonymous object is part of the rover’s landing debris, international media outlets said on Thursday.
Experts added the debris is a thermal blanket that likely came loose during the rover’s landing on Mars.
Perseverance’s Twitter account described: “My team has spotted something unexpected: It’s a piece of a thermal blanket that they think may have come from my descent stage, the rocket-powered jet pack that set me down on landing day back in 2021.”
It added: “That shiny bit of foil is part of a thermal blanket – a material used to control temperatures. It’s a surprise finding this here: My descent stage crashed about 2 km away. Did this piece land here after that, or was it blown here by the wind?”
Here’s part of the team at JPL that wrapped me up in thermal blankets. Think of them as spacecraft dressmakers. They work with sewing machines and other tools to piece together these unique materials.
— NASA's Perseverance Mars Rover (@NASAPersevere) June 15, 2022
NASA also released a photograph of what appears to be the same blanket shape on Earth.
The agency explained: “Here’s part of the team at JPL (Jet Propulsion Laboratory) that wrapped me up in thermal blankets. Think of them as spacecraft dressmakers. They work with sewing machines and other tools to piece together these unique materials.”
Last April, the Ingenuity helicopter still spots breathtaking landscapes of the Red Planet during its milestone flights. The tiny device captured photos of the debris and gears that helped NASA’s Perseverance Rover on Mars.
The photos were taken on the first year anniversary of the Martian Helicopter’s first flight on the surface of the Red Planet.
It captured photos of the stripped parachute that was used during the rover’s landing and the cone-shaped back shell that protected the rover and its tiny companion Ingenuity.