A NASA observatory to identify potentially dangerous asteroids observed a rapidly passing object, which turned out to be a spacecraft destined for Mars, and that was the Chinese Tianwen-1 mission to Mars, which set out on Thursday (July 23) to begin a seven-month journey to the planet the Red.
According to the American “space” website, the spacecraft consists of two spacecraft and landing, while China hopes to become its first successful mission on Mars.
The photos were taken through a program run by NASA’s Planetary Defense Coordination Office, which scans vast areas of the sky in search of space rocks in order to collect enough observations for astronomers to map the path of each object if one approaches slightly.
The new animation of Tianwen-1 velocity came off Earth from a facility in Mauna Loa on the island of Hawaii, and is one of a pair of Hawaiian observatories that make up the last warning system for the impact of asteroids.
ATLAS observatories regularly identify new celestial bodies, such as the comet of the same name that dazzled sky watchers earlier this year before fading away.
But in this case, there was no celestial body permeated to see ATLAS, and instead, the second mission was among three of the upcoming spacecraft being launched to Mars during the three-week orbital alignment window this summer.
China hopes to send the robotic components of the Tianwen-1 mission a large body of scientific data on the Red Planet.
Prior to this launch, the first interplanetary mission was sent to the United Arab Emirates on Sunday, and NASA’s special contribution to Mars, a massive roaming vehicle called Perseverance that also carries a small experimental helicopter called Ingenuity, is scheduled to start next Thursday, July 30.