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Glossary term: Rover

Description: A human-made machine that is sent to another planet, lands on it using a landing method (propellants to push it up before landing and (or) parachutes etc.), studies that planet up close, and sends the data it collects back to Earth using a communication method. It can be operated from Earth and – if possible – move around the planet. Rovers can carry a lot of scientific instruments such as small drills, a sample collecting tool, cameras, and even a small laboratory to analyze its air and ground samples and send the results back.

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Term and definition status: This term and its definition is still awaiting approval

The OAE Multilingual Glossary is a project of the IAU Office of Astronomy for Education (OAE) in collaboration with the IAU Office of Astronomy Outreach (OAO). The terms and definitions were chosen, written and reviewed by a collective effort from the OAE, the OAE Centers and Nodes, the OAE National Astronomy Education Coordinators (NAECs) and other volunteers. You can find a full list of credits here. All glossary terms and their definitions are released under a Creative Commons CC BY-4.0 license and should be credited to "IAU OAE".

Related Media

The NASA Mars rover Curiosity stands on a hill on Mars.

Mars rover Curiosity

Caption: This self-portrait of NASA's Curiosity Mars rover shows the vehicle at the site from which it reached down to drill into a rock target called "Buckskin" on lower Mount Sharp. The selfie combines several component images taken by Curiosity's Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI) on 5 August 2015, during the 1,065th Martian day, or sol, of the rover's work on Mars.
Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS credit link
License: PD Public Domain icons