Mars 2020 Perseverance Rover: Important Facts

The third and final mission to the red planet of the month lifted off on Thursday 30th July at 17:20 IST from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida. After covering a huge distance of 300 million miles the Mars Perseverance Rover is expected to land on 18th February 2021. The main objective of the Mars Perseverance Rover is to search for signs of ancient life and collect rock and soil samples for a possible return to Earth.

Mars Perseverance Rover:

The Rover is a car-size 2200 – pound wheeled robot which is very similar in design to NASA’s previous Mars rover, Curiosity, which landed in 2012. The Rover’s destination is a crater Jezero. Jezero was once a lake in the northern hemisphere of Mars. Scientists believe that it is a promising location where vital signs of ancient Martian life could be preserved if life ever existed on Mars. Perseverance is carrying several high lens cameras, which will capture several views as the spacecraft zooms through the atmosphere en route to landing and two microphones, which will be the first to record sounds on another planet. However, the interesting fact to note is that the Rover is carrying a helicopter too. Named “Ingenuity” the four-pound helicopter is an experiment carried by NASA and if it works it will be the first powered flight on another planet.

Related Information:

This launch is followed by the July’s earlier launches by the UAE and China on 20th and 23rd July respectively. Though the Rover Perseverance is last to arrive, all three of them is expected to arrive at Mars about the same time in February.

What is the Gandhi-King Exchange Act?

The United States Congressional committee has recently passed a bill Inspired by American civil rights leader and lawmaker John Lewis visit to India in the year 2009. Mr Lewis visited India to mark the 50th anniversary of Dr Martin Luther King Jr’s trip to India in the year 1959. This bill written by Mr Lewis got final approval of the key congressional committee on 29th July in the US. However, the bill has to pass through the House and Senate before it becomes the law.


Marking 150th birth anniversary of Gandhi, the bill promotes the legacy of Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr. This bill is Co-sponsored by Congressman Ami Bera. The bill seeks to establish a bilateral partnership between the US and India. It will also strengthen the ties between both countries.

Key findings of Bill:

The bill empowers the Indian Government and the US Government to establish an annual educational forum for students from both the countries to study the work and legacies of both the eminent personalities. The bill also intends to establish a development training system on conflict resolution founded on the principles of non-violence of Gandhi, and establish a base to address social, environmental, and health concerns in India. The bill formulates the establishment of the US-India Gandhi-King Development Foundation. It also asks the President and the CEO of the United States Institute of Peace to develop a training initiative known as Gandhi-King Global Academy.

John Lewis:

American politician and the civil right hero not only in the US but across the globe who fought for democracy, human rights, justice and equality. He was highly inspired by the work of Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr. On his visit to India with a congressional delegation, he created the Gandhi-King Exchange Act to apply the philosophies of Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr. and let the whole world learn and admire their teachings.