This artist concept shows the location of the RIMFAX instrument on the next rover scheduled to launch for Mars.

August 2, 2016

This artist concept shows the location of the RIMFAX instrument on the next rover scheduled to launch for Mars. RIMFAX is a ground-penetrating radar that reveals buried layers of sediment, rock, ice, water, or saltwater. These layers hold the record of ancient climate conditions on Mars.

The Radar Imager for Mars' Subsurface Experiment (RIMFAX) uses radar waves to probe the ground under the rover. It is located at the lower rear of the Mars 2020 rover’s “body." The radar signals returned to RIMFAX look a little like sonograms that show structures under the Martian surface. The radar signals change depending on what materials are present underground, such as ice, rock, sand, and liquid water.

Credit

NASA/JPL-Caltech/FFI

ENLARGE

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