NASA’s persistence rover landed on the surface of Mars last week and gave us the first audio recording of the mysterious red planet. But who cares about the sound of Mars when there is a mystery to be solved? Hours after the Mars rover landed, Internet detectives discovered a secret message hidden in the device̵
The Mars Rover’s parachute has a pair of red and white columns, separated by concentric rings. After determining that the red and white columns represent the ones and zeros of binary code, Twitter user @FrenchTech_paf organized the numbers into groups of ten, creating a 10-bit code that translates easily into alphabetic letters. From there, @FrenchTech_paf quickly discovered the parachute’s message: “Dare Mighty Things.”
So you know how NASA sent a secret message to Mars? @FrenchTech_paf found out.
Dare to do mighty things 🚀✨ pic.twitter.com/HIO2BUVjNd
– Emily Calandrelli (@TheSpaceGal) February 23, 2021
“Dare Mighty Things” is the motto used by the Perseverance team at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. But it is not the only message hidden in the parachute! The outer rings, read as binary, translate to NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory coordinates – that’s 34 ° 11’58 “N 118 ° 10’31” W for the curious.
Shortly after the code was cracked, Perseverance chief engineer Adam Stelzner took to Twitter to confirm its existence. It’s possible there are still secret messages hidden in the parachute, or even in the humble Perseverance Rover. The space agency is known for its use of symbolism, and NASA’s Curiosity rover, which landed on Mars in 2012, actually had the Morse code for JPL (Jet Propulsion Laboratory) carved into its wheels as a kind of footprint.
Source: NASA via IGN