China successfully achieved the feat of landing its first Mars Rover ‘Zhu Rong’ on the red planet, on May 15, 2021, becoming the only second nation to do so. Till date, only the United States has successfully landed its rover on Mars. All other countries that have tried have either crashed or lost contact soon after reaching the surface.
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The vehicle used a combination of a protective capsule, a parachute & a rocket platform to make the descent. Zhurong, which means God of Fire, was carried to Mars on the Tianwen-1 orbiter. China’s Mars rover, called Zhurong after an ancient fire god in Chinese mythology, will part ways with the lander by driving down a foldable ramp. Once it has deployed, the rover is expected to spend at least 90 Mars days.
Important takeaways for all competitive exams:
- China National Space Administration Founded: 22 April 1993;
- China National Space Administration Administrator: Zhang Kejian;
- China National Space Administration Headquarters: Haidian District, Beijing, China.