Mars Rover Perseverance

Meet the Newest Rover


Perseverance is the latest rover to land on Mars. Accompanied by a robotic helicopter named Ingenuity, Perseverance will seek signs of ancient life and collect rock samples that may later be returned to Earth.

The rover will explore ancient lake and delta deposits to determine what the ancient lake was like and whether there are any preserved biosignatures related to life on Mars. 

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New Releases

Curiosity Rover on Mars

STEM in 30: What it Takes to Explore The Red Planet

We have been exploring the Red Planet through satellites, landers, and rovers for decades. The next step of that exploration is planned for February 2021 when NASA’s Perseverance rover (and Ingenuity helicopter) will land on the surface of Mars. 


Flights of Fancy

Our Flights of Fancy story time series helps young learners and their grown ups explore air and space through stories and new illustrations. 

Viking Orbiter 1 Mosaic of Mars

Live Chat: Mars

Celebrate the landing with a live chat all about Mars, featuring Abigail Harrison, aka "Astronaut Abby," an aspiring astronaut and founder of "The Mars Generation."

An artists rendering of the Perseverance Rover travelling along a valley on Mars.

What's New in Aerospace

Ask your questions about Perseverance and robotic exploration of Mars to scientists from the Museum’s Center for Earth and Planetary Studies.

About Perseverance

Podcast Episode

The Rover

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Illustration of Perseverance rover on Mars

Is There Life on Mars?

With the Perseverance rover set to land on Mars on February 18, 2021, we are finally in a position to know where to go, what to look for, and knowing whether there is, or ever was, life on the Red Planet.

Jezero crater on Mars

Why Jezero Crater?

After five years examining all the options for landing site, find out why Jezero crater was selected. 

Illustration of Perseverance rover

How the Perseverance Rover Will Pave a Path into the Future?

Percy will attempt many firsts, and in doing so, it will help carve a new path for future robots and humans to follow, for as much as lies behind us, even more lies ahead.

Mars Pathfinder’s View of Twin Peaks

The Path to Mars 2020

The Museum’s Dr. Ellen Stofan and NASA’s Dr. Thomas Zurbuchen look back at the Mars Pathfinder mission and Sojourner rover. Discover the innovative elements of Mars 2020 (including a small solar-powered helicopter!) and what we hope to learn about the Red Planet next.

A low angle image of a rocket holding Perseverance launching. You can see fire from the blast.

Launching to Mars with NASA's Perseverance Rover

Dr. Ellen Stofan and Dr. Thomas Zurbuchen talk about the technological advancements of the newest Mars rover (and helicopter!).

An illustration of a Mars Rover scanning a rock.

Mars Perseverance Rover Will Look for Signs of Ancient Life

Learn about the science behind NASA’s Perseverance rover with the Museum’s Dr. Ellen Stofan and NASA’s Dr. Thomas Zurbuchen.

A rocket stands against a dusky blue sky.

Preparing to Launch the Perseverance Rover to Mars

We caught up with Dr. Thomas Zurbuchen at Kennedy Space Center for the July 2019 launch of the Perseverance rover and the Ingenuity helicopter.

Mission to Mars AR App

Drawing on the resources and research behind Smithsonian Channel’s documentary Making Tracks on Mars, Mission to Mars AR will allow anyone with a smartphone or tablet to participate in the mission through innovative augmented reality experiences grounded in the real equipment and events. Exploiting the latest technologies, the app will let viewers launch an Atlas V 541 rocket, interact with and drive “Percy” and its rover predecessors, fly the helicopter, and even step through a portal onto the planet to explore the present and future of Mars exploration.

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For Students

An artists illustration of Perseverance, a six wheeled rover with a camera on a neck that emerges from the bed that attaches the four wheels, and a drill on an arm that extends from the same bed. It has an anthropomorphized look.

Naming the Rover

Out of thousands of submissions, Alex Mather's suggestion for the name of the Mars 2020 rover was chosen: Perseverance! Join student reporter Jaden Jefferson as he talks with Alex, the student who named the Mars Rover.


Smoke and dusk billows out as a rocket launches, juxtaposed against a blue background.

Moments of Launch

Student reporter Jaden Jefferson talks to Jim Norman, director of launch services at NASA, about the launch of the Perseverance Mars rover.

A screenshot showing four screens with people in them.

Live Chat with Experts

In this Air and Space Live Chat, NASA engineers Kobie Boykins and Christina Hernández and curator Matthew Shindell talked about Perseverance as it made its way to Mars.

More Resources for Educators

Videos, podcast episodes, stories, teacher guides, and more: we have everything you need to bring space into the classroom with your students. Delve into these resources related to our monthly theme, Exploring Other Worlds.

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More About Mars

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Exploring Mars

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