Bengaluru museum displays replica of NASA's Mars Rover

The replica built by Cornell University students in the United States

A full-scale model replica of Mars Rover Opportunity, which NASA launched two decades ago for signs of ancient water on the Red Planet, was unveiled at the Visvesvaraya Industrial & Technical Museum (VITM) in Bengaluru Space Gallery for public view.

The U.S. Under Secretary of Commerce for International Trade, Marisa Lago, U.S. Consul General in Chennai, Judith Ravin, U.R. Rao Satellite Centre Bengaluru’s director Dr M. Sankaran, and NISAR Missions System Manager at Jet Propulsion Laboratory Ana Maria Guerrero took part in the unveiling ceremony.

“As the United States and India forge even closer cooperation across critical sectors, space provides yet another example of our partnership, with today’s dedication ceremony serving as a symbol of our mutual commitment,” said Lago on the occasion.

The replica built by Cornell University students in the United States was on display at the Smithsonian’s Air and Space Museum in Dulles, Virginia, and at the U.S. Pavilion during the 2020 World Expo in Dubai.  It was also exhibited at the American Centre in the U.S. Consulate General in Chennai.

Highlighting the role space exploration plays in inspiring young minds, U.S. Consul General in Chennai Judith Ravin said, “U.S. Consulate General is proud to support the Visvesvaraya Industrial and Technical Museum in promoting science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education.  We hope to inspire the next generation of space enthusiasts and innovators with a display of the Mars Rover Opportunity replica.”

VITM’s Director K.A. Sadhana said, “The display of the full-scale replica of NASA’s Mars Rover Opportunity in the Space Technology Gallery of VITM will foster public engagement creating a unique opportunity for the community to learn and be inspired by the wonders of space exploration.”

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