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The Chinese robotic spacecraft Tianwen-1 has completed photographing the entirety of Mars and the shots are a combination of medium-definition and high-definition photos in what is being called a major success.
The Tianwen-1 launched in July 2020 and consisted of an orbiter, a rover, a lander, two deployable cameras, and a remote camera. The spacecraft reached Mars in February 2021 and beamed back its first image of the Red Planet to China.
After that initial snapshot, the spacecraft made 1,344 orbits around Mars and scanned and photographed the planet for over a year.
Here is a high-resolution photo of Valles Marineris, a huge canyon system that spreads for 2,500 miles across the surface of Mars and that is 4 miles deep in some parts.
Experts believe that these canyons started to form billions of years ago as the planet cooled.
And here is an image of the south pole on Mars, a part of the planet that researchers are particularly interested in because there is a large subglacial lake there with salty water where there could potentially be evidence of life.
I wonder how long it’s going to take for humans to set foot on Mars?
Time will tell…