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China spacecraft enters Mars orbit, second in two days after UAE

China says its Tianwen-1 spacecraft has entered orbit around Mars on a mission to land a rover and collect data on underground water and possible signs of ancient life.

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Mars Orbiter Mission | China space mission

AP  |  Beijing 

Mars

China says its Tianwen-1 spacecraft has entered orbit around Mars on a mission to land a rover and collect data on underground water and possible signs of ancient life.

The arrival of the orbiter-rover combo in orbit on Wednesday evening Beijing time makes it the second spacecraft in two days to reach the red planet. An orbiter from the United Arab Emirates led the way on Tuesday.

Next week, the U.S. will try to land its Perseverance rover on the Martian surface. Only the U.S. has successfully touched down on Mars - eight times beginning with two Viking missions. A lander and rover are in operation today.

All three Mars missions launched last July.

The Chinese mission is its most ambitious yet. If all goes as planned, the rover would separate from the spacecraft in a few months and attempt to touch down.

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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First Published: Wed, February 10 2021. 20:38 IST
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