The ExoMars Rover want to land near the equator of the planet. It would be safer

The working group of European-Russian mission “ExoMars” chose priority objective for the landing of the Rover, which will search for the existence of past or present life on Mars. The choice of scientists fell on the plateau Acidic (Oxia Planum).

The working group of European-Russian mission “ExoMars” chose priority objective for the landing of the Rover, which will search for the existence of past or present life on Mars. The choice of scientists fell on the plateau Acidic (Oxia Planum).

The working group of European-Russian mission “ExoMars” chose priority objective for the landing of the Rover, which will search for the existence of past or present life on Mars. The choice of scientists fell on the plateau Acidic (Oxia Planum).
One of the two

The second candidate was the valley of the moor (Mawrth Vallis). And there are sedimentary rocks, and clay minerals that may have formed in the presence of water nearly 4 billion years ago. If Mars really existed life in such areas may show traces of it. The options of locations for the landing of the Rover was discussed for nearly five years.

Moor valley is located just North of the Acidic plateau, and the latter chose rather, for security reasons, not scientific interest. The area is about a kilometer below, so the lander will be more time for braking in a rarefied atmosphere of Mars. After the collapse of the probe Schiaparelli in 2016, scientists do not want to risk ExoMars.

In any case, this is not a final decision. The working group’s proposal should be agreed by ESA and Roskosmos.
When the launch?

The unit had planned to send in 2018, but the terms of the mission shifted. The next launch window opens in July 2020, and closer to the end of March 2021 ExoMars will arrive at the planet.

Source: ESA