The image of a "bundle of string" captured by Perseverance rover last month in Mars' crimson sand is likely a Dacron netting, American Space Agency NASA said in a blog post.
Perseverance landed on the Martian surface on February 18, 2021 and the Entry, Descent and Landing (EDL) system was later dumped onto the surface at a safe distance away from the rover.
When the EDL hardware collided with the Martian surface, some of the parts were broken into smaller pieces. The pieces of these EDL debris were discovered in pictures of the Hogwallow Flats region, which is about two kilometres northwest of the EDL hardware crash zones, the post further said.
"Shiny pieces of thermal blanket like material, Dacron netting material that is also used in thermal blankets and a string like material that we believe is a piece of shredded Dacron netting were seen in those EDL debris," said the space agency.
The operations team has catalogued around half-a-dozen pieces of probable EDL debris in this location.
A ball of knotted, stringlike material flew below the rover's front end on July 11, 2022. The wind blew away the string before it could be photographed by the higher-resolution Mastcam-Z cameras. Based on the observed 2x2 mm2 grid mesh design, the hardware teams suspect this is another piece of Dacron netting.
They observed that this specific piece of netting appeared to have experienced extensive unraveling/shredding, implying that it was subjected to powerful pressures.
Windblown EDL debris appears to gather naturally in Hogwallow Flats. Perseverance team members are studying photos of the debris to see whether it may be a source of contamination for the sample tubes from this location, the space agency further said.