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NASA's Perseverance rover just went for its first drive on Mars, then spotted its own wheel tracks in the dirt

Added 03-05-21 07:14:01pm EST - “Perseverance's six-wheel drive leaves quite an imprint in its path. Those wheels are ready to carry the rover over an ancient river delta.” - Businessinsider.com

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Posted By TheNewsCommenter: From Businessinsider.com: “NASA's Perseverance rover just went for its first drive on Mars, then spotted its own wheel tracks in the dirt”. Below is an excerpt from the article.

NASA's Perseverance rover left its footprints on Mars on Thursday after going for its first drive. The jaunt proved the vehicle can make its way around the red planet.

Since Perseverance landed in Mars' Jezero Crater on February 18, it has been calibrating its instruments and upgrading software. In this initial drive, Perseverance moved about 13 feet (4 meters) from its landing spot, made a 150-degree turn to the left, and backed up about 8 feet (2.5 meters) — a routine that it "executed perfectly," according to NASA engineer Anais Zarifian.

"Our first drive went incredibly well," Zarifian, who works on the rover's mobility team, said in a press briefing on Friday. "I don't think I've ever been happier to see wheel tracks, and I've seen a lot of them."

The team has another, longer drive planned  for the rover late on Friday, and is hoping for yet another on Saturday.

"So many people I can't even count have worked towards this very moment for years," Zarifian said. "It's just amazing to see. I don't think the team could've been happier."

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