NASA makes successful rover missions seem mundane. Spirit and Opportunity were wildly successful, and Curiosity and Perseverance would both be considered successes even if they stopped working today. But complex missions don’t succeed without rigorous testing.
The ESA takes that lesson to heart, and when it comes to their Mars rover, they’ve built a ‘rover playground’ to test it in.
Shock testing is commonly used throughout engineering to determine how a product will do when impacted by something. That something could be anything from the ground to a cruise missile. Like so much else in space exploration, engineers at NASA are performing the same type of test, just scaled up. Instead of simply dropping the object under test, as is common in most settings, they shoot it with a steel ball going 3000 ft/second.