The rover has successfully gathered up another sample, and the rock has triggered some scientific speculation. "Another little piece of Mars to carry with me," the rover's Twitter account tweeted Tuesday. "My latest sample is from a rock loaded with the greenish mineral olivine, and there are several ideas among my science team about how it got there."
The rover's Twitter account went on to say, "Hypotheses are flying!" and added, "Science rules." If you're familiar with the green gemstone peridot, then you've seen examples of how olivine can appear on Earth. It's a common mineral in our planet's upper mantle.
The Perseverance rover is gathering up small chunks of Mars and placing them in sample tubes for safekeeping. It's possible scientists on Earth could get their hands on the olivine-loaded rock in the future. NASA is developing a mission to go fetch the rover's samples and bring them back to Earth for study in the early 2030s.
Watch this: This is how NASA's Perseverance rover will get Mars rocks back to Earth
The Perseverance rover first spent some time investigating the layered rock it sampled by abrading the surface and examining what was beneath. Perseverance has a finite number of sample tubes on board, so the team is picking out interesting candidates for collection.