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China’s Tianwen-1 Mars mission adjusts orbit to prepare for a Red Planet landing

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An artist’s illustration of China’s Tianwen-1 mission in orbit round Mars. (Picture credit score: CNSA)

China’s Tianwen-1 spacecraft now orbiting Mars is slated to carry out systematic checks of onboard gear after adjusting its orbit in preparations for the nation’s first Martian touchdown try later this 12 months. 

The Tianwen-1 orbiter used its three,000-newton engine on Feb. 15 to put itself right into a polar orbit across the Pink Planet. Tipping the scales at 5 metric tons, Tianwen-1 — consisting of an orbiter, lander and rover — will carry out a number of extra orbital changes earlier than inserting itself right into a parking orbit from which the orbiter will carry out an preliminary survey of candidate touchdown areas.


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