24 April 2022
The United Nations Postal Administration (UNPA) recently issued six stamps and three souvenir sheets to celebrate human achievements on planet Mars, covering missions from the Emirate Mars Mission team, CNSA, and NASA.
Mars has been a source of curiosity for mankind since time immemorial and the space community has long strived to uncover the mysteries of the planet. The new UN stamps mark a historic year for exploration, with three missions reaching their destinations on and around the Red Planet during 2021.
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Mars 2020 mission landed on Mars on 18 February 2021. The Mission includes the Perseverance Rover and the Ingenuity Helicopter. The duration is expected to last at least one Mars year (about 687 Earth days). The objective of the Mission is to seek signs of ancient life and collect samples of rock and soil samples for possible return to Earth.
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The United Arab Emirates (UAE) mission to Mars launched its Hope Probe to study the Martian atmosphere and climate. It successfully entered Martian orbit on 9 February 2022. The orbiter confirmed the existence of a discrete aurora, a highly localized atmospheric phenomenon on the night side of the planet, and took note of water-bearing clouds that grow and shrink daily.
The China Nations Space Administration (CNSA) launched its first Mars mission Tianwen-1, which consisted of an orbiter, two deployable cameras, lander, remote camera, and the Zhurong Rover. The mission landed on the Martian surface on 15 May 2021. The scientific objectives will be achieved by remote and in-situ exploration jointly. The investigations from orbit will focus on the integrated and comprehensive exploration of Mars, for the purpose of establishing an overall scientific context of the planet.
The 58c stamp features Proctor Crater of Mars and the $1.30 value shows the Mars 2020 Perseverance Rover, meanwhile the two Swiss Franc values show Mars taken by UAE Hope Probe (CHF 1.50) and the Emirates Mars Mission ready to launch (CHF 1.50). Finally, the €0.85 stamp features the pre-selected landing area for Tianwen-1 mission, and the €1 features the Zhurong Rover operating on Mars.
Issue date: 24 April 2022, unstamps.org