China releases first images from its Zhurong rover on Mars

China releases first images from its Zhurong rover on Mars


China’s Zhurong rover has beamed back its first images from the surface of Mars after landing on a vast plain called Utopia Planitia. The rover plunged through the Martian atmosphere last Friday, bundled together with a lander after separating from China’s Tianwen-1 probe.

The new images released by the China National Space Administration (CNSA) show the two robots meticulously executing their first post-landing steps: the lander extended a tiny ramp to help Zhurong put its six wheels on the Martian surface for the first time. And Zhurong unfolded its four wing-like solar panels and a communications antenna, as seen from one of the rover’s navigation cameras.

Image: CNSA

A shot of the backside of Zhurong taken by…

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