China Plans Mars Rover for 2020

China Plans Mars Rover When for a 2020 Launch Window​

​Last Friday, Ye Peijian, the chief designer of China's lunar exploration program, told a Chinese News Agency that the country plans to land a rover on Mars when the opportunity presents itself in 2020.

As Peijian said:

We will not make it by 2018 but we can try to launch a probe in 2020.

Mars launch windows occur about every 28 months using standard Hohmann transfer orbits, but Peijian does not believe China can meet a 2018 launch, but 2020 seems likely.  Especially, as pointed out earlier, China has all the technology it needs for a successful launch.

China has been eyeing the Red Planet since 2013 when it landed  the YUTU (Jade Rabbit) rover on the moon - an extremely successful venture that continues to operate to this day.

And Mars is just another step in the country's ambitious space program, which also includes a permanent space station and eventually manned flights to both the Moon and Mars.

RELATED: China Plans Manned Missions to Deep Space

No details were given on what the rover would carry or what it would look like.

Source: Sputnik News

Header image: Chinese lunar lander. Credit AFP/Peter Parks

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