Say my name, say my name! NASA has opened the polls for public to vote on a name for its next rover to visit Mars. Currently called Mars 2020, this car-sized 2,300-pound rover is scheduled to launch this summer from Cape Canaveral in Florida. Like its many predecessors, however, this rover is ready for a new name!
From thousands of entries from K-12 school students around the United States, there are now nine finalists to choose from:
· Endurance, K-4, Oliver Jacobs of Virginia
· Tenacity, K-4, Eamon Reilly of Pennsylvania
· Promise, K-4, Amira Shanshiry of Massachusetts
· Perseverance, 5-8, Alexander Mather of Virginia
· Vision, 5-8, Hadley Green of Mississippi
· Clarity, 5-8, Nora Benitez of California
· Ingenuity, 9-12, Vaneeza Rupani of Alabama
· Fortitude, 9-12, Anthony Yoon of Oklahoma
· Courage, 9-12, Tori Gray of Louisiana
NASA will take into consideration both the public votes and discussions with the finalists. In March, the winning name and student will be announced, and that student will be invited to Florida to watch the launch!
The newly named rover is planned to visit Mars in Feb. 2021 and land in the Jezero Crater. Once on Mars, the rover will help the search for evidence of past life, test technology that could help with humans making the trip, and collect samples to bring back to Earth.
Head to this website before 11:59 pm on January 27!
Interested in more space stories like this one? Catch a show in LSC’s Jennifer Chalsty Planetarium, the biggest planetarium in America. A portion of our all-live “Wonders of the Night Sky” show is always set aside for LSC Space News Now stories.