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NASA will land its next rover, Perseverance, on the surface of Mars in February of 2021, and an engineer on the Curiosity rover pilot team just opened up about what the process is like. 

There's roughly a">22-minute signal delay between earth and mars, meaning that piloting the craft over unknown terrain requires some unique planning. Evan Hilgemann, a NASA engineer that was selected to serve on the team of engineers that piloted the Curiosity rover, recently wrote a Medium post opening up about what the experience was like.

His goal in writing the post wasn't just to share his unique story, but also to give everyone watching Perserverence drive across the red planet a little background on what's going on behind the scenes.

The first thing Hilgemann notes about piloting the rover is that "Curiosity only receives information from Earth once a day and is on its own the rest of the time." So how does his team even pilot the rover if it only gets information once a day?

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