Inside Science (Our Universe): Roving for Signs of Life on Mars
Aug 18, 2020, 8:00 - 9:30 PM
The George Mason University Observatory is partnering with the Smithsonian Associates for Space Tuesdays with George Mason University.
Description: Between July 17 and August 5, NASA launches the Mars 2020 rover Perseverance from Cape Canaveral, in anticipation of an early 2021 touchdown in the Jezero Crater. Key objectives for Perseverance include gathering rocks and soil for a sample-return mission from Mars, preparing for possible human exploration, assessing the ancient habitability of the planet for sustaining life, and looking for evidence of past life. Peter Plavchan and Michael Summers, professors of physics and astronomy at George Mason University, look at the prospects of life on Mars, past and present, through scientific evidence collected by robotic landers and rovers and remote-sensing orbiters. With remote control of the GMU Observatory, they also bring the skies into your living room, displaying views of Jupiter, Saturn, and other celestial objects, weather-permitting. (Mars will not be visible until after midnight).
Note: This program begins at 8 p.m. due to the timing of sunset.