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NASA, ESA to Discuss Mars Sample Return Mission

NASA will host a media teleconference at 11 a.m. EDT (8 a.m. PDT) on Wednesday, July 27, to discuss the architecture for its Mars Sample Return campaign.

NASA and the ESA (European Space Agency) recently held a systems requirement review as part of the Mars Sample Return campaign’s conceptual design phase – a phase when the architecture is refined and solidified. The briefing will present the architecture proposal that is expected to be finalized in September 2022.

The Mars Sample Return campaign may revolutionize humanity’s understanding of Mars by returning scientifically selected samples for study using the most sophisticated instruments around the world. This strategic partnership with ESA will be the first mission to return samples from another planet, including the first launch from the surface of another planet. The samples to be returned – currently being collected by Perseverance during its exploration of Jezero Crater, home to an ancient river delta – are thought to be the best opportunity to reveal the early evolution of Mars, including the potential for life.”

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