The NASA team last week installed custom-milled aluminum wheels for the rover, each with a diameter of 21 inches. Also installed in a series of complex pivot points and pillars. They allow the Mars 2020 Mars to spin in place, maintaining traction as it passes through the soft sands of Mars and harder rocky terrain.
The Mars 2020 probe will also conduct scientific experiments and collect samples, and NASA hopes to bring these samples back to Earth. The key is the main mechanical arm. In fact, given its size and articulated joints, it is more similar to the elephant trunk.
It is 7 feet long when fully extended and has five joints: "shoulder joint" joint, "shoulder joint" joint, "elbow" joint, "wrist" joint and swivel joint. Five electric motors are used to control it, and at the top is a so-called "turret."
This is a different set of tools, including scientific cameras, mineral and chemical analyzers, and drill bits. With it, the Mars 2020 detector can identify interesting points from which samples can be collected. Also included is a series of interchangeable 1-inch drill bits, so the detector can collect rock samples with a diameter of 0.5 inches for testing.
The Mars 2020 Rover team at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory said that the "turret" would not be installed on the robot until a few weeks later. The detector is expected to be launched from July 2020 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Base, Florida.