The Mars 2020 Mission with Rover Perseverance successfully landed at Jezero Crater on February 18, 2021

XIA collaborated with NASA/JPL and contributed to the PIXL instrument on the Mars Rover, which will help search for signs of ancient life on Mars.

NASA’s mission to Mars in 2020 will look for signs of habitable conditions and microbial life in the ancient past. The rover’s Planetary Instrument for X-ray Lithochemistry (PIXL) is a microfocus x-ray fluorescence instrument that will perform 2D fast mapping of rock samples with sub-mm spatial resolution, revealing the geochemical fine structure of the Martian surface. XIA’s technology and expertise is being utilized in the digital signal processing and fast mapping of the x-ray detector signal. PIXL will operate with higher spatial resolution and at higher speed than any previous planetary probe, and along with other instruments it will help answer the question “Was there ever life on Mars?”

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