Members of NASA’s Perseverance Mars rover team watch in mission control as the first images arrive moments after the spacecraft successfully touched down on Mars, Thursday, Feb. 18, 2021, at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. 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. Photo Credit: (NASA/Bill Ingalls)

The largest, most advanced rover NASA has sent to another world touched down on Mars Thursday, after a 203-day journey traversing 293 million miles (472 million kilometers). Confirmation of the successful touchdown was announced in mission control at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Southern California at 3:55 p.m. EST (12:55 p.m. PST).

Packed with groundbreaking technology, the Mars 2020 mission launched July 30, 2020, from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida. The Perseverance rover mission marks an ambitious first step in the effort to collect Mars samples and return them to Earth.  

“This landing is one of those pivotal moments for NASA, the United States, and space exploration globally – when we know we are on the cusp of discovery and sharpening our pencils, so to speak, to rewrite the textbooks,” said acting NASA Administrator Steve Jurczyk. “The Mars 2020 Perseverance mission embodies our nation’s spirit of persevering even in the most challenging of situations, inspiring, and advancing science and exploration. The mission itself personifies the human ideal of persevering toward the future and will help us prepare for human exploration of the Red Planet.”

About the size of a car, the 2,263-pound (1,026-kilogram) robotic geologist and astrobiologist will undergo several weeks of testing before it begins its two-year science investigation of Mars’ Jezero Crater. While the rover will investigate the rock and sediment of Jezero’s ancient lakebed and river delta to characterize the region’s geology and past climate, a fundamental part of its mission is astrobiology, including the search for signs of ancient microbial life. To that end, the Mars Sample Return campaign, being planned by NASA and ESA (European Space Agency), will allow scientists on Earth to study samples collected by Perseverance to search for definitive signs of past life using instruments too large and complex to send to the Red Planet.

“Because of today’s exciting events, the first pristine samples from carefully documented locations on another planet are another step closer to being returned to Earth,” said Thomas Zurbuchen, associate administrator for science at NASA. “Perseverance is the first step in bringing back rock and regolith from Mars. We don’t know what these pristine samples from Mars will tell us. But what they could tell us is monumental – including that life might have once existed beyond Earth.”

Some 28 miles (45 kilometers) wide, Jezero Crater sits on the western edge of Isidis Planitia, a giant impact basin just north of the Martian equator. Scientists have determined that 3.5 billion years ago the crater had its own river delta and was filled with water.

The power system that provides electricity and heat for Perseverance through its exploration of Jezero Crater is a Multi-Mission Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator, or MMRTG. The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) provided it to NASA through an ongoing partnership to develop power systems for civil space applications.

Equipped with seven primary science instruments, the most cameras ever sent to Mars, and its exquisitely complex sample caching system – the first of its kind sent into space – Perseverance will scour the Jezero region for fossilized remains of ancient microscopic Martian life, taking samples along the way.  

“Perseverance is the most sophisticated robotic geologist ever made, but verifying that microscopic life once existed carries an enormous burden of proof,” said Lori Glaze, director of NASA’s Planetary Science Division. “While we’ll learn a lot with the great instruments we have aboard the rover, it may very well require the far more capable laboratories and instruments back here on Earth to tell us whether our samples carry evidence that Mars once harbored life.”

Paving the Way for Human Missions

“Landing on Mars is always an incredibly difficult task and we are proud to continue building on our past success,” said JPL Director Michael Watkins. “But, while Perseverance advances that success, this rover is also blazing its own path and daring new challenges in the surface mission. We built the rover not just to land but to find and collect the best scientific samples for return to Earth, and its incredibly complex sampling system and autonomy not only enable that mission, they set the stage for future robotic and crewed missions.”

The Mars Entry, Descent, and Landing Instrumentation 2 (MEDLI2) sensor suite collected data about Mars’ atmosphere during entry, and the Terrain-Relative Navigation system autonomously guided the spacecraft during final descent. The data from both are expected to help future human missions land on other worlds more safely and with larger payloads.

On the surface of Mars, Perseverance’s science instruments will have an opportunity to scientifically shine. Mastcam-Z is a pair of zoomable science cameras on Perseverance’s remote sensing mast, or head, that creates high-resolution, color 3D panoramas of the Martian landscape. Also located on the mast, the SuperCam uses a pulsed laser to study the chemistry of rocks and sediment and has its own microphone to help scientists better understand the property of the rocks, including their hardness.

Located on a turret at the end of the rover’s robotic arm, the Planetary Instrument for X-ray Lithochemistry (PIXL) and the Scanning Habitable Environments with Raman & Luminescence for Organics & Chemicals (SHERLOC) instruments will work together to collect data on Mars’ geology close-up. PIXL will use an X-ray beam and suite of sensors to delve into a rock’s elemental chemistry. SHERLOC’s ultraviolet laser and spectrometer, along with its Wide Angle Topographic Sensor for Operations and eNgineering (WATSON) imager, will study rock surfaces, mapping out the presence of certain minerals and organic molecules, which are the carbon-based building blocks of life on Earth.

The rover chassis is home to three science instruments, as well. The Radar Imager for Mars’ Subsurface Experiment (RIMFAX) is the first ground-penetrating radar on the surface of Mars and will be used to determine how different layers of the Martian surface formed over time. The data could help pave the way for future sensors that hunt for subsurface water ice deposits.

Also with an eye on future Red Planet explorations, the Mars Oxygen In-Situ Resource Utilization Experiment (MOXIE) technology demonstration will attempt to manufacture oxygen out of thin air – the Red Planet’s tenuous and mostly carbon dioxide atmosphere. The rover’s Mars Environmental Dynamics Analyzer (MEDA) instrument, which has sensors on the mast and chassis, will provide key information about present-day Mars weather, climate, and dust.

Currently attached to the belly of Perseverance, the diminutive Ingenuity Mars Helicopter is a technology demonstration that will attempt the first powered, controlled flight on another planet.

Project engineers and scientists will now put Perseverance through its paces, testing every instrument, subsystem, and subroutine over the next month or two. Only then will they deploy the helicopter to the surface for the flight test phase. If successful, Ingenuity could add an aerial dimension to exploration of the Red Planet in which such helicopters serve as a scouts or make deliveries for future astronauts away from their base.

Once Ingenuity’s test flights are complete, the rover’s search for evidence of ancient microbial life will begin in earnest.

“Perseverance is more than a rover, and more than this amazing collection of men and women that built it and got us here,” said John McNamee, project manager of the Mars 2020 Perseverance rover mission at JPL. “It is even more than the 10.9 million people who signed up to be part of our mission. This mission is about what humans can achieve when they persevere. We made it this far. Now, watch us go.”

More About the Mission

A primary objective for Perseverance’s mission on Mars is astrobiology research, including the search for signs of ancient microbial life. The rover will characterize the planet’s geology and past climate and be the first mission to collect and cache Martian rock and regolith, paving the way for human exploration of the Red Planet.

Subsequent NASA missions, in cooperation with ESA, will send spacecraft to Mars to collect these cached 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, a division of Caltech in Pasadena, California, manages the Mars 2020 Perseverance mission and the Ingenuity Mars Helicopter technology demonstration for NASA.

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Posted by | August 5, 2020 | General Survey

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Dubai: Hundreds of vacancies are up for grabs at an open day for jobseekers in Dubai today and the employment opportunities are available to those looking to work in the banking and financial services sector.

The Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation (MOHRE) has announced that at least 357 jobs have just opened up at various banks and financial institutions in the emirate.

New jobs in UAE,

The vacancies, however, are open only to Emirati nationals.

By Gulfnews

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According to Gulf News Survey: Latest data show which jobs are best to apply for in UAE today, and ones to avoid

Dubai: With many companies still slow about hiring, the odds may continue to be not in jobseekers’ favour these days. The number of employment openings across the UAE remains low compared to the previous peak periods, according to the latest analysis, but certain professions are still in demand.

Recruitment tracker Monster.com has recently browsed thousands of vacancy listings from July to September this year and pegged some occupations or skills that have risen or fallen in demand.

Among the jobs that are seeing an increase in hiring are those in the marketing field. This is mainly due to a growing trend of companies looking to hire competent individuals, to cash in on a major consumer spending boom in the UAE.

According to Monster.com, there has been an “impressive surge” in the recruitment of marketing professionals in the country.

“An increase in consumer spending unsurprisingly feeds into the need to understand the nature of demand; what are people buying? What are their shopping habits? The marketing industry is therefore beginning to benefit from the continued growth of the consumer goods sector,” said Sanjay Modi, managing director of Monster.com Asia Pacific and Middle East.

Here’s a quick look at the professions that are sought after right now and how much they pay monthly – and the ones that are seeing a slowdown in hiring.

An important note to keep in mind, however, is that the succeeding salaries, provided by recruitment specialists Hays, are for illustration purposes only. Actual compensation may vary, depending on company size and employee qualifications/ experience.

Marketing
the boss

% of increase in job listings: 28%
Average monthly salaries of select jobs
Head of marketing/ marketing director: 50,000
Marketing manager: 22,000
Brand manager: 20,000
Event manager: 15,000
Marketing executive: 12,500

Communications
A handful of corporations

% of increase in job listings: 28%
Average salaries* of select jobs
Head of communications: 42,000
Public relations manager: 32,000
Social media executive: 12,000

Software (including hardware and telecom)

Shereef Bishay, co-founder of Dev Bootcamp (centre), with a student during a class

% of increase in job listings: 16 per cent
Average salaries* of select jobs
Software development manager: 34,000
Software developer/engineer: 13,500

Engineering and production
Cost-effective steps

% of increase in job listings: Zero
Average salaries* of select jobs
Senior resident engineer: 55,000
Senior project manager: 49,000
Resident engineer: 36,000
Engineering manager: 30,000
Senior planning engineer: 29,000
Structural engineer: 16,000
Site engineer: 10,000
Mechanical engineer: 9,500
Assistant/junior engineer: 6,000
Electrical engineer: 5,000
Civil engineer: 4,500

Sales and business development
Reworking strategies

% of increase/decrease in job listings: -28%
Average salaries* of select jobs
Sales director: 60,000
Head of business development: 40,000
Head of sales: 40,000
Senior sales manager: 40,000
Sales manager: 30,000
Business development manager: 30,000
Business development consultant: 15,000
Sales support/executive: 12,500

Human resources and administration

Human resources experts and office managers

% of increase/decrease in job listings: – 22 per cent
Average salaries* of select jobs
Compensation and benefits manager: 40,000
Learning and development manager: 27,500
HR manager: 30,000
Senior recruiter: 17,000
Learning and development assistant: 14,500
HR officer/ coordinator: 12,000
Recruiter: 10,000

*Salary figures are in dirhams and include bonuses, allowances and other benefits

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Posted by | May 21, 2017 | General Survey