“All life as we know it is made up of organics. But, importantly, organic matter can also be made up by processes that are chemical and not related to life; for instance, through water rock interactions. And organics are also found in interstellar dust,” said Sunanda Sharma, a mission instrument scientist at Nasa’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), BBC reported.
For the last four months, Perseverance has been working on the 40m-high scarp that represents the edge of the delta.
The robot will shortly drive off this slope to a nearby flat area of the crater floor where the rock samples, in their protective titanium tubes, can be deposited on the ground.
“We’re looking at the potential of putting down 10 to 11 sample tubes here on the surface,” said JPL project systems engineer Rick Welch.