NASA released an image on June 21 to show that the Mars 2020 rover is almost ready for launch as it received its starboard legs and wheels.
Talking about the development of the rover, David Gruel, the assembly, test, and launch operations manager for Mars 2020 at JPL, said, “Now that’s a Mars . With the suspension on, not only does it look like a rover, but we have almost all our big-ticket items for integration in our rearview mirror — if our rover had one.”
In case you are wondering, NASA said that the legs are made of titanium while the rover’s six wheels are made of aluminum. While all of the wheels have their own motors, the two front and two rear wheels have their individual steering that will enable the rover to turn 365 degrees in a place.
Apart from that, in order for the rover to be able to ride over uneven surfaces of Mars, the scientists have installed a suspension system. This according to NASA, will enable the rover to withstand 45-degree tilt in any direction although rovers will avoid terrains which require more than 30-degree tilts.
This latest news comes as NASA prepares for the launch of the rover next summer. Few days earlier, NASA installed a camera in the JPL laboratory to give everyone a glimpse of the works as the scientists and engineers assemble the rover.
As of now, the Mars 2020 rover is scheduled to launch in July 2020. After it reaches the red planet, it will look for signs of past habitable conditions as well as proof for life in Mars.