The cameras' zoom feature will be capable of resolving features as small as about 1 millimeter in size in the near field and about 3- to 4 centimeters from 100 meters away. Scientists will use the cameras to navigate the rover, collect samples and study rocks and soil.
In addition to still images, the cameras can shoot video, which will enable them to capture dynamic phenomena such as swirling dust devils, drifting Martian clouds, passing comets and other astronomical events.
Complementing Mastcam-Z is SuperCam, which will be able to take pictures and determine the chemical composition and mineralogy of target rocks and regolith - including the presence of organic compounds from a distance. For closer inspections, scientists can tap two instruments flying to Mars for the first time. They are:
The Planetary Instrument for X-ray Lithochemistry (PIXL), an X-ray fluorescence spectrometer and high-resolution imager that can reveal fine-scale elemental composition of Martian surface materials, and The Scanning Habitable Environments with Raman & Luminescence for Organics and Chemicals (SHERLOC), another spectrometer which uses a ultraviolet laser for fine-scale mineralogy and to detect organic compounds.