Looking at some renderings of the CNSA Zhurong rover I noticed some curious (pun intended) details on the wheels:
- This Newsy Today article:
- In this The Conversation article:
I cannot tell if this is visible on the actual rover picture
These markings/cutouts do not appear in pictures of physical mock-ups of the rover:
- South China Morning Post article, in which it is called "Zhu Rong"
- A replica of the Tianwen-1 Mars rover is displayed during an exhibition inside the National Museum in Beijing, China March 3, 2021. REUTERS/Tingshu Wang
I was thinking it could be some coded Morse code message (like Curiosity), but I could not make sense of the Morse code translations. I discerned the following possibilities (assuming Latin alphabet, might there be a Chinese alphabet equivalent Morse code?):
The pictures clearly show just one single pattern, the following are my interpretations of that single pattern (i.e., left to right, right to left, ignore most inner 'dot', etc.)
- . .- . (EAE)
- . -. . (ENE)
- ..-. (L)
- .-.. (F)
- . .- (EA)
- -. . (NE)
Which all seem meaningless to me.
Does anyone know if these details are on the actual rover?
What do these markings mean (if anything)?