A new project office in Houston will oversee the first samples brought back from Mars

(ORDO NEWS) — NASA announced that its new project office, responsible for receiving and curating the first samples delivered from the Red Planet, will be located at the Johnson Space Center in Houston.

The office will be located in Johnson’s Astromaterials Research and Exploration Division. The division has expertise in the processing and storage of extraterrestrial specimens.

“The Johnson Center holds the largest and most diverse collection of astromaterials in the world, starting with samples delivered by the Apollo program,” said Vanessa Wyche, director of the Johnson Center.

“With our experience, we look forward to managing a project that will provide science-based Mars samples collected by the NASA Perseverance rover.”

Johnson will work with NASA’s Mars Exploration Program to develop plans for sample recovery and subsequent transition to scientific research.

The project team will retrieve, contain, transfer, secure, oversee, and coordinate the scientific study of samples collected by NASA’s Perseverance rover, which are expected to arrive on Earth in 2033.

Perseverance is collecting samples from the Lake Lake crater and the areas around it, where the river once flowed into the lake billions of years ago. A key goal of the Perseverance mission to Mars is astrobiology.

The rover is currently studying the planet’s geology and former climate, paving the way for human exploration of the Red Planet, and is the first mission to collect and store Martian rocks and regolith.

Bringing samples back to Earth from Mars is expected to be the most challenging robotic spaceflight campaign yet.

This will be the first mission to bring back scientifically selected samples from another planet, as well as the first launch from the surface of another planet.

It is believed that the samples collected by the rover while exploring the ancient lake provide the best opportunity to reveal information about the early evolution of Mars.

By studying the history of Mars, we improve our understanding of all the rocky planets in the solar system, including Earth.


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