Mars is a happening place these days. Rockets launched by the United Arab Emirates and China both entered into orbits around the red planet earlier this week. Next Thursday, the NASA rover Perseverance will attempt a dramatic landing into Jezero Crater using a parachute and a crane.

Not much more than a century ago, Percival Lowell published his book "Mars and its Canals" in 1906, claiming there was a network of ancient canals on the Martian surface built by an intelligent society. Today, our Martian explorers are sent in the hope of finding signs of past microbial life, not builders of civilizations. Perseverance will also be looking for water under the surface which could be used by future Martians, technically Earthlings on Mars, in the coming decades. However, if you are just eager to see what Mars looks like up close, Perseverance has a camera drone.

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