I woke up like this.
June 14, 2021 7:06 PM   Subscribe

The China National Space Administration's Zhurong Mars rover has taken a selfie [image heavy link in Chinese]; and it is cute as hell.

BBC coverage; Live Science story.
posted by Mitheral (23 comments total) 18 users marked this as a favorite
 
I think that whether it is terrible depends on how you also feel about clicking links to American government domains

also, wow, that is one heck of a cute Mars rover
posted by DoctorFedora at 7:23 PM on June 14 [2 favorites]


What a friend!
posted by phunniemee at 7:24 PM on June 14 [2 favorites]


Fantastic to see someone other than a bunch of yahoos in Pasadena land something on Mars and successfully operate it, and it hasn't been for lack of trying. Good luck, little Zhurong!
posted by tclark at 7:31 PM on June 14


Robot cute, but the thing that caught my eye was the arrowhead in the CNSA logo. Hard not to see a common theme.
posted by Halloween Jack at 7:36 PM on June 14 [7 favorites]


I work in aerospace and the first thing I did after seeing this was ring friends at JPL asking why they didn't think of this. I mean, this is LA after all!
posted by starscream at 7:40 PM on June 14 [1 favorite]


I bet the next nation to send a rover comes with Instagram filters and a selfie stick.
posted by nickggully at 8:58 PM on June 14


I saw an article recently about how China is working on their own space station because the US won't let China use the International Space Station or something?
posted by aniola at 9:23 PM on June 14


I bet the next nation to send a rover
Let me tell you about the crew and cargo of the Irish Rover...
posted by Fiasco da Gama at 11:28 PM on June 14 [8 favorites]


I would like a map of where all the Mars rovers are. I found some with all the NASA ones. But that’s not all…
posted by nat at 11:56 PM on June 14


I would like a map of where all the Mars rovers are

Wikipedia has a map (Features and artificial objects on Mars) which is used on the Mars rover page.
posted by RichardP at 1:03 AM on June 15 [3 favorites]


Can I get one on WISH for $39.99 and 12 weeks delivery?

It looks like a baby preying mantis, which is way too cute.
posted by halfbuckaroo at 4:27 AM on June 15 [1 favorite]


I’m impressed they were able to land it on a platform and then roll down a ramp to the surface. I’ve tried that a bunch of times in Kerbal Space Program and it never seems as easy as you expect it to be.
posted by nickmark at 4:43 AM on June 15 [1 favorite]


and a selfie stick.

See Curiosity and MAHLI.
posted by zamboni at 7:40 AM on June 15


What a cute little rover! I appreciate that the Chinese government is as aware of the importance of public relations as NASA is. I mean of course they are, and they should both be very proud of their space accomplishments and have a little fun with it. But in the US we have this stereotype of China being a dictatorial government when in fact projects like this rely just as much on public support as they do in the US.

But is it terrible that I was nervous about clicking that Chinese link?

This comment is offensive.
posted by Nelson at 9:37 AM on June 15 [2 favorites]


Anyone have info on how this rover landed? Looks like it rolled off a big base station. I loved the play by plays for the recent NASA landings. (I'd love video of mission control when it landed, it's been fun to watch some nerds be happy with the other ones.)
posted by macrael at 10:21 AM on June 15


China is working on their own space station because the US won't let China use the International Space Station or something?

Yup! I posted about it recently.
posted by doctornemo at 10:40 AM on June 15


Good for CSNA and China!
More space exploration!
posted by doctornemo at 10:41 AM on June 15


Maybe extraneous information -- Zhurong 祝融 is a fire god in Chinese mythology, befitting 火星 the 'Fire Planet'.

And the Mars explorer Tianwen 天问 is named after a poem "Question for the Heaven" by Qu Yuan, the poet the Dragon Boat Festival 端午节 commemorates -- this year that festival fell on yesterday 6/14.
posted by of strange foe at 11:02 AM on June 15 [1 favorite]


Anyone have info on how this rover landed? Looks like it rolled off a big base station. I loved the play by plays for the recent NASA landings. (I'd love video of mission control when it landed, it's been fun to watch some nerds be happy with the other ones.)

This one has Mandarin narration, but English subtitles.

SCMP has a small video summary.
posted by i used to be someone else at 11:37 AM on June 15


Zhurong is in Utopia Planitia at the moment; seems awfully barren for where the shipyards should be.
posted by i used to be someone else at 11:41 AM on June 15 [3 favorites]


Gee, that looks JUST like Spirit / Opportunity class rovers!

You figure it's another Shanzhai edition?
posted by kschang at 1:12 PM on June 15


The more symbols we have in common, the more we have in common. What incredible light in that photo. What a very able camera! The rover is elegant and insect like. The solar panels look like wings!
posted by Oyéah at 8:37 PM on June 15


You figure it's another Shanzhai edition?

There is a lot of design constraints that will have an effect on appearance. Eg: it has to fit in a rocket. It has to survive landing. It needs power and solar cells make sense but generally are flat. But also more panel surface is better so make them fold up so as to still fit qin the rocket. A low centre of gravity is stable but a taller sensory package has a better view so put it on a stalk. Six wheels won't be disabled by a pothole like four would.

And in general why reinvent a solution that may fail disasterly when a proven solution exists that you can crib off of? That's just good engineering.
posted by Mitheral at 6:46 AM on June 16


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