NASA will scratch Jezero in search for alien life
After five years of research, NASA has decided to land its Mars 2020 probe in the Jezero crater on the red planet. The location is chosen from a list of sixty possible landing sites.
NASA announced this decision on Monday. The unmanned probe has to leave Cape Canaveral in Florida in July 2020 with an Atlas-V launcher. It will be the same type as the Atlas that has brought the successful Mars Curiosity rover to the Red Planet.
Mars 2020 should not only search for indications of previously livable conditions and earlier microbiological life. The robot jeep will also take samples of rock and the soil, and store them in a kind of storage place. NASA plans to retract the storage cell with the help of ESA, the European Space Agency and bring them to Earth.
The Jezero crater once housed the delta of a river. It may have been collected and stored through water and sediments, former organic molecules and other indications of microbiological life in the crater.