Mars is the neighbor of the earth, and it is also a terrestrial planet in the habitable zone. There are many similarities between Mars and the Earth, so soon after humans left the Earth, they began a series of exploration and research on Mars.
To explore Mars, various Mars probes are naturally indispensable. Therefore, since the second half of the last century, humans have launched many probes to Mars, including orbital probes and landing probes. To explore more detailed information on Mars, a Mars rover is indispensable, but due to the limitations of human scientific and technological capabilities, the success rate of the rover’s landing on Mars is not particularly high.
And the distance between Mars and the Earth is not a fixed value, but a very large range. When we want to launch a Mars probe, we can only choose when the orbit of Mars is closest to the orbit of the earth, which is what scientists call the Mars launch window. Basically, we can only wait for the launch time every two years and one month.
From July to August 2020, it is the window for the launch of Mars again, so in recent times, the exploration of Mars has become a hot topic again. A major highlight of this year’s Mars launch window is that my country will also launch its own Mars probe Tianwen-1.
One important reason why Tianwen-1 has attracted the attention of the world is that our Mars exploration mission is a three-in-one mission. That is, we have to complete the orbiting, landing and patrolling of Mars at one time. If successful, my country will become the second country after the United States to independently master Mars landing and patrol detection technology.
At 13:25 on July 23, Tianwen-1 launched a journey to Mars with our expectations, taking the first step in my country’s planetary exploration. From the 23rd to the 27th, Tianwen-1 has crossed a distance of 1.2 million kilometers, which shows how fast the probe is in the universe. Tianwen-1 is equipped with the most advanced space exploration technologies in China, which can be said to be a manifestation of my country’s comprehensive scientific and technological strength.
The Tianwen-1 Mars Rover is equipped with very advanced optical equipment. During the journey to Mars for more than half a year, it is natural to take a variety of deep-space photos. And its first photo is a group photo of the earth and the moon taken 1.2 million kilometers away. Tianwen-1 used the optical navigation sensor to image the earth and the moon, and obtained a clear picture of the moon. In this black-and-white photo, the earth and the moon are large and one small, both in the shape of a crescent, and they accompany each other in the vast universe.
Many people may have a question: why the earth and moon are half-moon-shaped instead of full circle? It is estimated that many friends will often see photos of the earth and the moon taken in space on the Internet. In those photos, the earth is very beautiful and the moon is also a shiny spherical shape. In fact, the photos of the Earth and the Moon we saw on the Internet were all processed by PS, and they were not real scenes seen in space.
To see the beautiful Earth and the bright moon, we can only shoot in a very close to Earth orbit. Tianwen No.1 is 1.2 million kilometers away from the earth. From here, you can no longer see the beautiful scenery of the earth and the moon, you can only see a fuzzy half-moon-shaped image. The reason they are all crescent-shaped is mainly because they are far away.
We all know that the earth and the moon themselves do not emit light. There is only one real light source in the solar system, and that is the stellar sun. Other celestial bodies show light by reflecting sunlight. If there is no reflection of sunlight, we naturally cannot see them. These celestial bodies are not transparent, and when the sun is shining, they can only shine on one side, so we have the difference between day and night on the earth.
The sun can only shine on one end of the earth and the moon. The sun behind it is very dark, and the side facing the sun will be very bright. Therefore, the Tianwen-1 probe can only take a photo of the earth and the moon. At this time, they are all Presents a crescent shape. Perhaps in the eyes of many people, it would be a bit regretful to see such a group photo of the earth and the moon, but unfortunately they are not bright and colorful.
But in the eyes of many people, we were silent when we saw the group photo here. The reason for the silence is that we once again recognize the smallness of the earth and the vastness of the universe. When we are on the earth, we will feel how vast and beautiful the time human beings have lived and inhabited for millions of years. At that time, human beings were very proud, because we were the only intelligent civilization on the earth and the overlord at the top of the biological chain.
But when we really go out of the earth and look back at a position far away from the earth, you will see a very small earth. As Tianwen-1 keeps moving away from the earth, the image of the earth that can be photographed will become more and more blurred and smaller. When the probe reaches the orbit of Mars, the Earth will be a white light spot as large as a grain of sand.
The more we know about the universe, the more we feel anxious and worried. Therefore, we have to develop science and technology quickly and get out of the shackles of the earth as soon as possible. Hawking once issued a warning to mankind: warning mankind to leave the earth as soon as possible. Many people may disagree with this warning, but when we think about it carefully, you will find that Hawking’s warning has important significance.
Compared to the solar system with a diameter of about 2 light-years, the Earth is a tiny planet, and compared to the Milky Way with a diameter of 150,000 light-years, the solar system is also a very tiny galaxy. The Milky Way is only a very small galaxy in the entire universe. Through this comparison and recognition, the earth is actually a trivial planet in the universe, and human beings are actually nothing in the universe.
Although human beings have lived safely and steadily on the earth for millions of years, there are too many disasters that can threaten the survival of mankind and the safety of the earth. Whether it is the ecological drastic changes of the earth itself, or the impact of asteroids outside the earth, the explosion of supernovae, the invasion of alien civilizations, etc., it can bring a final disaster to the earth and mankind.
Therefore, in recent years, mankind has accelerated the development of space technology. Only when we put our goal in the starry sky and in the universe can we truly grow up. Although Tianwen-1 is the first Mars rover launched by our country, it carries human expectations. And Mars may be one of the most important transit stations for humans to explore the starry sky in the future. Through this pedal, we can explore the more distant starry sky.