Japan aims to bring back soil samples from Mars moon by 2029

  • IASbaba
  • August 20, 2021
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Japan aims to bring back soil samples from Mars moon by 2029

Part of: GS Prelims and GS – III – Space; Science and Tech

In news: The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, or JAXA, plans to launch an explorer in 2024 to land on Phobos, a Martian moon, to collect 10 grams of soil and bring it back to Earth in 2029 (ahead of the United States and China)

Key details 

  • Soil on Phobos is likely to be a mixture of material from the moon itself and material from Mars that was spread by sandstorms.
  • Significance: Collecting samples from multiple locations on Phobos could provide a greater chance of obtaining possible traces of life from Mars.
    • Scientists also hope to learn about the evolution of the Martian biosphere.

Do you know?

Earlier missions

  • Two other NASA landers are also operating on Mars — 2018’s InSight and 2012’s Curiosity rover. 
  • Currently, following mission are exploring Mars:
    • Three from the U.S. – Odyssey, MAVEN, Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, Mars 2020 (Perseverance Rover & Ingenuity Helicopter)
    • Two from Europe – Exo Mars, Mars Express
    • One from India – Mangalyaan
    • One from China – Tianwen-1 (orbiter & rover) 
    • One from UAE – Emirates Mars Mission, Hope Spacecraft

News Source: TH

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