Space, Tianwen-1 enters Mars parking orbit

Beijing, February 1 (Adnkronos / Xinhua)

After a complex orbital maneuver and flight that began last July, the Chinese Tianwen-1 probe has finally entered Mars standing orbit. China National Space Agency (CNSA) confirmed that at 6:29 a.m. Beijing time, Tianwen-1 entered a parking orbit as its closest point to the planet was 280 kilometers while its farthest point was 59,000 kilometers away. The US Space Agency indicated that the completion of one orbit, Tianwen-1 will take about two days from Mars because a day on the destroyed planet lasts about 40 minutes more than a day on Earth.

The Tianwen-1, including the orbiter, lander and vehicle, will be in orbit for about three months, and CNSA added that the payloads on the orbiter will all be activated for scientific exploration. The mid-resolution camera, high-resolution camera and spectrometer will perform a detailed topography and dusty survey of the designated landing area in preparation for the capture.

Tianwen-1 was launched on July 23, 2020 from the Wenchang spacecraft launch site in Hainan Island Province in southern China. The spacecraft has traveled in space for 215 days and is currently located about 212 million kilometers from Earth. The spacecraft entered orbit around Mars on February 10 and made two adjustments to the orbit on February 15 and February 20.

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Harold Manning

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