The Perseverance rover carries seven instruments to conduct its science and exploration technology investigations.
The Perseverance rover carries seven instruments to conduct its science and exploration technology investigations.
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What are Science Instruments?

Science instruments are state-of-the-art tools for acquiring information about Martian geology, atmosphere, environmental conditions, and potential biosignatures.

Read news article: NASA Announces Mars 2020 Rover Payload ›
Two Mastcam-Z cameras in a lab with a pen knife for scale.


James Bell, Principal Investigator
Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ, USA

An advanced camera system with panoramic and stereoscopic imaging capability with the ability to zoom. The instrument also will determine mineralogy of the Martian surface and assist with rover operations.
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The remote sensing mast with MEDA wind sensors in the clean room.

MEDA (Mars Environmental Dynamics Analyzer)

Jose Rodriguez-Manfredi, Principal Investigator
Centro de Astrobiologia, Instituto Nacional de Tecnica Aeroespacial, Spain

A set of sensors that will provide measurements of temperature, wind speed and direction, pressure, relative humidity and dust size and shape.
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The MOXIE instrument is lowered into the rover in the clean room.

MOXIE (Mars Oxygen ISRU Experiment)

Michael Hecht, Principal Investigator
Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA, USA

An exploration technology investigation that will produce oxygen from Martian atmospheric carbon dioxide.
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Close up image of the PIXL instrument opening lens cover.

PIXL (Planetary Instrument for X-ray Lithochemistry)

Abigail Allwood, Principal Investigator
NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), Pasadena, CA, USA

An X-ray fluorescence spectrometer that will also contain an imager with high resolution to determine the fine scale elemental composition of Martian surface materials. PIXL will provide capabilities that permit more detailed detection and analysis of chemical elements than ever before.
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The RIMFAX Radar instrument sitting in a lab.

RIMFAX (Radar Imager for Mars' Subsurface Experiment)

Svein-Erik Hamran, Principal Investigator
Forsvarets Forskningsinstitutt, Norway

A ground-penetrating radar that will provide centimeter-scale resolution of the geologic structure of the subsurface.
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An engineering model of SHERLOC, one the instruments onboard NASA's Perseverance Mars rover.

SHERLOC (Scanning Habitable Environments with Raman & Luminescence for Organics and Chemicals)

Luther Beegle, Principal Investigator
NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), Pasadena, CA, USA

A spectrometer that will provide fine-scale imaging and uses an ultraviolet (UV) laser to determine fine-scale mineralogy and detect organic compounds. SHERLOC will be the first UV Raman spectrometer to fly to the surface of Mars and will provide complementary measurements with other instruments in the payload.
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SuperCam mast unit in a clean room.


Roger Wiens, Principal Investigator
Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana; Los Alamos National Laboratory, Los Alamos, New Mexico, USA
Sylvestre Maurice, Co-Principal Investigator
IRAP, Toulouse, France

An instrument that takes images, analyzes chemical composition, studies minerals, and records audio with a microphone. The instrument can detect the presence of chemicals in rocks and regolith -- loose rock and dust on top of a rock -- from a distance. This instrument was built and is operated as a partnership between Los Alamos National Laboratory (Los Alamos, New Mexico, USA) and the Centre National d'Etudes Spatiales, France.
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