Humanity Is Sending 3 New Rovers to Mars in 2020 to Look for Signs of Life

The space agencies of the US, Europe, Russia, and China are all launching rovers to Mars this year. From a report: The 2010s saw Mars welcome NASA’s Curiosity rover, which landed on the red planet in 2012, and bid farewell to the Opportunity rover, which was declared dead in February after 14 years on the Martian surface. Curiosity is now the only working rover on the planet, signaling the end of a decadal era in the exploration of Mars. But even as this older generation of Mars-cars winds down, a flurry of new rover missions is gearing up to redefine Martian road trips for a new decade. Three different rovers are scheduled to launch to Mars during the summer of 2020: NASA’s Mars 2020 rover, Europe and Russia’s Rosalind Franklin, and China’s Huoxing-1. If this trio manages to successfully land on Mars in 2021, it would mark the first time that the planet has ever hosted three operational rovers (or even four, assuming that Curiosity is still rolling). The presence of two rovers from agencies other than NASA would also diversify Martian surface operations after decades of American dominance on the planet.

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