China names Mars rover for traditional fire god

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BEIJING (AP) — China’s first Mars wanderer will be named Zhurong after a customary fire god, the public authority reported Saturday.

The wanderer is on board the Tianwen-1 test that showed up in Mars circle on Feb. 24 and is because of land in May to search for proof of life.

It is important for Chinese space designs that incorporate dispatching a maintained orbital station and handling a human on the moon. China in 2019 turned into the main nation to land a space test on the little-investigated far side of the moon and in December returned lunar rocks to Earth interestingly since the 1970s.

The wanderer’s title fits with the Chinese name for Mars — “Huo Xing,” or fire star, the China National Space Administration said.

The name “connotes lighting the fire of China’s planetary investigation,” a representative CNSA executive, Wu Yanhua, was refered to by the authority Xinhua News Agency as saying.

The top contender for the arrival site is Utopia Planitia, a stone tossed plain where the U.S. lander Viking 2 landed in 1976.

CNSA says Tianwen-1’s objectives including examining and planning the Martian surface and topography, searching for water ice and contemplating the environment and surface climate.

China would turn into the third country after the previous Soviet Union and the United States to put a robot wanderer on Mars.

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