Goldstone 70-m Antenna
Goldstone's 230-foot (70-m) antenna tracks under a full moon. This photograph was taken on Jan. 11, 2012.

Communications with Earth

NASA's Mars 2020 mission uses the NASA's Deep Space Network (DSN), an international network of antennas that provides communication links between planetary exploration spacecraft and their mission teams on Earth.

The Deep Space Network consists of three deep-space communications complexes placed approximately 120 degrees apart around the world: at Goldstone, in California's Mojave Desert; near Madrid, Spain; and near Canberra, Australia. This strategic placement permits constant links to distant spacecraft even as the Earth rotates on its own axis.

As with previous Mars landers and rovers, the Mars 2020 mission relies on Mars-orbiting spacecraft to relay data from the rover to the antennas of the Deep Space Network.

Deep Space Network antennas at Goldstone's "Apollo Valley"
Antennas of NASA's Deep Space Network provide two-way communications with spacecraft exploring the planets.

NASA Deep Space Network (DSN)

The NASA Deep Space Network - or DSN - is an international network of antennas that supports interplanetary spacecraft missions and radio and radar astronomy observations for the exploration of the solar system and the universe. Learn more