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I don't think they discovred it like it took ages to find earth and reachBecause if they glassed that armory that would be enough to blow the living shat out of everything.Because it was on Mars. The Covenant never entered the Sol system until they found Earth in October 2552. The first group of ships fled shortly after, and the ships that arrived afterwards was mainly focused on retrieving possible Forerunner artifacts on the surface, such as in Cleveland, and attempting to uncover the Portal. Some Covenant was deployed to different areas on the surface of Earth such as Havana as well, likely to simply slaughter humans and cut down any resistance. There were never any reports of Coventant landing on Mars, and it is unlikely they would since their primary focus was on the Ark anyway. However, I would assume they might attempt to send some strike teams in to take out Misriah Armory to halt the production of most weapons vital to the UNSC war effort, so it is likely most UNSC forces on Mars were tasked with defending the Armory. Some of this is speculation, but the most of it is fact that has been stated

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