Graphic with U-M Logo and words In the Media

Science Magazine

The engineers, researchers, and leaders at the Space Physics Research Laboratory are making headlines with their innovative work.


The discoveries of the Mars Perseverance Rover and the Planetary Instrument for X-ray Lithochemistry (PIXL) have been featured in a cover story for Science Magazine, Vol. 377: Issue 6614, titled “Igneous Mars.” The PIXL Instrument uses assemblies that were developed by an engineering team at the Space Physics Research Laboratory (XTRM Labs) at the University of Michigan. These assemblies include a high voltage multiplier and an associated control module to power the micro-focus X-ray spectrometer with 28,000 Volts. Mounted on the robotic arm of the Perseverance rover, the PIXL Instrument has acquired high spatial resolution observations of rock and soil chemistry for over 618 sols, rapidly analyzing the elemental chemistry on the surface of Mars and collecting more than 113,000 spectra — a record-setting achievement. | September 30, 2022