Replay: talks 'Summer of Mars' with NASA, Planetary Society

This summer, it seems like everyone wants to go to Mars. 

With three missions launching to the Red Planet in 2020, we at thought it was time to take stock of humanity's drive to reach Mars. Join us for our "Summer of Mars" webinar as we look at the missions launching this year, how they'll advance the search for life and, possibly, help set the stage for astronauts on Mars. 

Registration was free to ask questions via chat (for the first 500 viewers), but we carried the event live on this page, as well as on YouTube and the homepage.

Join as we talk the summer of Mars with NASA's Jim Watzin and the Planetary Society's Jim Bell.  (Image credit:

I'll moderate our discussion, which will begin at 12 p.m. EDT (1600 GMT) and last up to an hour. We'll start with NASA's Mars 2020 rover Perseverance, which is poised to launch July 30, and discuss the United Arab Emirates' Hope orbiter and China's ambitious Tianwen-1, a rover-lander-orbiter combo, both of which launched this week. And there's more missions headed to Mars, like the European-Russian ExoMars mission and Japan's Martian Moons eXploration project. 

Our guests: 

Jim Watzin: Director of NASA's Mars Exploration Program. NASA has invited the public to join its Perseverance Mars launch and "Be a Virtual Guest" of the launch here.

Jim Bell: President of The Planetary Society; principal investigator for Perseverance's MastCam-Z camera system.  (For details on how to join the Planetary society, click here.)

I hope you'll join us as it looks to be an exciting discussion. If you miss our live webinar, we'll have a recording of the talk once it concludes.

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Tariq Malik

Tariq is the Editor-in-Chief of and joined the team in 2001, first as an intern and staff writer, and later as an editor. He covers human spaceflight, exploration and space science, as well as skywatching and entertainment. He became's Managing Editor in 2009 and Editor-in-Chief in 2019. Before joining, Tariq was a staff reporter for The Los Angeles Times covering education and city beats in La Habra, Fullerton and Huntington Beach. In October 2022, Tariq received the Harry Kolcum Award for excellence in space reporting from the National Space Club Florida Committee. He is also an Eagle Scout (yes, he has the Space Exploration merit badge) and went to Space Camp four times as a kid and a fifth time as an adult. He has journalism degrees from the University of Southern California and New York University. You can find Tariq at and as the co-host to the This Week In Space podcast with space historian Rod Pyle on the TWiT network. To see his latest project, you can follow Tariq on Twitter @tariqjmalik.