SHERLOC, one of the payloads of NASA’s Mars 2020 rover mission
SHERLOC will be used by NASA to determine fine-scale mineralogy and detect organic compounds on Mars from 2021 onwards.
SHERLOC - Scanning Habitable Environments with Raman & Luminescence for Organics and Chemicals
Scanning Habitable Environments with Raman & Luminescence for Organics and Chemicals (SHERLOC) was in news because it is one of the seven payloads to be carried by the Mars 2020 rover mission.
SHERLOC is a spectrometer that will provide fine-scale imaging and will use an ultraviolet (UV) laser to determine fine-scale mineralogy and detect organic compounds. It will provide complementary measurements with other instruments in the payload.
SHERLOC is the first UV Raman spectrometer that will fly in the surface of Mars, the Red Planet.
Earlier, NASA on 31 July 2014 announced that in 2020 it will send a new rover to Mars named as Mars 2020 rover mission. This mission will attempt to determine the potential habitability of the Mars environment, and directly search for signs of ancient Martian life. The rover mission will carry seven instruments with it. The rover will reach on Mars in 2021, after a nine-month journey.