The latest rover to roam around the Red Planet is Perseverance. It has been on Mars since February 18, 2021, and has collected plenty of data already. NASA posted a tweet with Perseverance’s latest find, the best part is they wrote it as if it was the rover tweeting.
Perseverance tweeted on June 15 that it had found ‘something unexpected’. It identified the object as a piece of metal which seems to be stuck between Martian rock.
As reported by The Independent, NASA believes the object is ‘a piece of thermal blanket’ which is likely from when the rover landed on the Red Planet.
NASA is unsure how this piece of debris landed in this specific area of Mars, but it does raise concern.
Humanity’s impact on planets
The fact that the rover’s landing has left debris on Mars sparks concern over ‘humanity’s impact on space’. Space agencies like NASA go to great lengths to avoid contaminating other planets.
To do this, teams will thoroughly clean their landers before they are sent out into space. This means that rovers roaming various planets potentially looking for signs of life don’t contaminate them with Earth’s germs and bacteria that they aren’t familiar with.
Countries are also ‘committed to not disturbing the untouched nature of other planets’ according to The Independent. However, this isn’t always the case as some countries have gone around international agreements and have left ‘potentially dangerous debris in orbit’.