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05/08/2020 – Ephemeris – A look at Mars 2020 Endurance Rover’s target crater: Jezero

8 May 2020, 04:01 UTC
05/08/2020 – Ephemeris – A look at Mars 2020 Endurance Rover’s target crater: Jezero
(200 words excerpt, click title or image to see full post)

This is Ephemeris for Friday, May 8th. Today the Sun will be up for 14 hours and 34 minutes, setting at 8:56, and it will rise tomorrow at 6:21. The Moon, 1 day past full, will rise at 10:43 this evening.
The Mars 2020 Rover will be launched on July 17th or thereabouts to land at the crater Jezero* on the Red Planet. What’s the big deal about Jezero? In very early Martian history the crater was filled with water with a river flowing into it. What’s left is a dry river delta. The landing ellipse target for the rover will land it near the leading edge of that delta. Spectral analysis from the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter has detected clays that can contain, on Earth, fossils of single celled organisms. The rover is not equipped with a powerful enough microscope to detect them so they will be cached to be returned to the Earth sometime in the future as one of its objectives. Scientists believe that Mars was friendly for life for only a billion years or so.
The event times given are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan. They may be different for your location.
Addendum
Jezero is ...

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