The first Mars exploration mission “Tianwen-1” of China was successfully launched at Wenchang Spacecraft Launch Site at 12: 41 on July 23, opening a magnificent journey to Mars. It is the first step for China to conduct the planetary exploration independently. QUST is the only one institution in Shandong province that participated in this Mars exploration, providing technical support for the precise and safe landing of the “Tianwen-1” rover.
The technical achievement of QUST was mainly applied on the landing stage of the rover which was one of the most critical stages of the whole Mars exploration mission and directly determined the success of it. With the help of their theoretical research, the rover could use optical camera to capture images of Mars, and extract feature points of Mars surface, craters, ridges, ravines, etc. as navigation landmarks. By tracking these features with inertial navigation information, it is possible for the rover to assess its position, speed, posture and so on, so as to complete a precise landing.