The dusty, rocky Martian surface and a Chinese rover and a landing party with small national flags were spotted in photos posted Friday that the rover took on the red planet.
The four photos, published by the Chinese National Space Administration, also show the upper stage of the rover Zhurong and the view from the rover before it landed on its platform.
NASA CHIEF NILSON OPTIMISTIC ABOUT SPACE RESEARCH AS A PRIVATE SECTOR
Jurong placed a remote camera about 10 meters (33 feet) from the landing platform, then withdrew to take a group portrait, CNSA reported.
China landed the Tianwen-1 spacecraft carrying the Mars rover last month after spending about three months in orbit around the red planet. China is the second country to land and operate a spacecraft on Mars, after the United States.
The orbiter and the lander show small Chinese flags, and the lander has the mascots of the 2022 Winter Olympics and Paralympic Games in Beijing.
The six-wheeled rover explores an area known as Utopia Mountain, especially looking for signs of water or ice that could give clues as to whether Mars has ever survived.
At 1.85 meters (6 feet) high, the Jurong is significantly smaller than the American rover Perseverance, which explores the planet in a small helicopter. NASA expects his rover to collect its first sample in July to return to Earth in 2031.
In addition to the Mars mission, China’s ambitious space program plans to send the first crew to its new space station next week. The three crew members plan to stay for three months at Tianhe Station or Celestial Harmony, far exceeding the duration of a previous Chinese mission. They will perform space walks, construction and technical activities and perform scientific experiments.
Click here for the FOX NEWS app
Subsequent launches are planned to expand the station, send supplies and exchange crews. China has also returned lunar samples, the first in any country’s space program since the 1970s, landed a probe and rover from the less-explored far side of the moon.