Moscow: US rover Perseverance has extracted oxygen from the atmosphere of Mars for the first time in history, NASA said.
“The growing list of ‘firsts’ for Perseverance, NASA’s newest six-wheeled robot on the Martian surface, includes converting some of the Red Planet’s thin, carbon dioxide-rich atmosphere into oxygen. A toaster-size, experimental instrument aboard Perseverance called the Mars Oxygen In-Situ Resource Utilization Experiment (MOXIE) accomplished the task. The test took place April 20, the 60th Martian day, or sol, since the mission landed Feb. 18.,” NASA said in a statement on late Wednesday.
According to NASA, such devices could be used in the future for providing astronauts and rockets with oxygen on the Red Planet.
Perseverance was launched in July last year and landed on the surface of Mars in February. Since then, the rover sent to Earth photos from Mars, as well as a video made during the landing. Earlier this week, NASA engineers successfully launched the Ingenuity helicopter from the Perseverance rover on Mars’ surface, marking the first controlled, powered flight conducted on another planet.