Perseverance Samples 'Berea'
This image shows the rocky outcrop the Perseverance science team calls "Berea" after the NASA Mars rover extracted a rock core (right) and abraded a circular patch (left). The image was taken by one of the rover’s front hazard cameras on March 30, 2023, the 749th Martian day, or sol, of the mission.
Perseverance grinds, or abrades, circular patches into rocks so its science instruments can analyze the rocks' composition. The rock core it obtained, about the size of a piece of classroom chalk, was sealed in an ultra-clean sample tube. It is currently being stored in the rover’s Sampling and Caching System.
A key objective for Perseverance's mission on Mars is astrobiology, including the search for signs of ancient microbial life. The rover will characterize the planet's geology and past climate, pave the way for human exploration of the Red Planet, and be the first mission to collect and cache Martian rock and regolith (broken rock and dust).
Subsequent NASA missions, in cooperation with ESA (European Space Agency), would send spacecraft to Mars to collect these sealed samples from the surface and return them to Earth for in-depth analysis.
The Mars 2020 Perseverance mission is part of NASA's Moon to Mars exploration approach, which includes Artemis missions to the Moon that will help prepare for human exploration of the Red Planet.
JPL, which is managed for NASA by Caltech in Pasadena, California, built and manages operations of the Perseverance rover.
For more about Perseverance: mars.nasa.gov/mars2020/