NASA's InSight survey (Internal Exploration through Seismic Investigation, Geodesy and Thermal Transport) successfully completed its soft landing on Mars on Monday after a six-month trip of 300 million miles. And he's already sending back photos from the red wilder planet from her landing site to Elysium Planitia, courtesy of a post on the Twitter lander's official feed, "There's a tranquil beauty here. Looking forward to exploring the new house. "
– NASAInSight (@NASAInSight) November 27, 2018
InSight has already deployed two decade solar networks, each covering seven feet each, and providing the ship's operational power supply. Its mission is to provide insights into how rocky planets such as Mars form and evolve over time and are equipped with tools that include a seismometer, a heating probe and radio science equipment.
According to a NASA statement, InSight will start collecting data in the first week of operations, although Earth staff are working primarily on activating and calibrating its systems. One of the first tasks on his list is the launch of a 1.80 meter robotic arm that will take pictures of the Martian landscape, which will be completed in a few days. Many of his experiments will take time to develop because NASA will need extensive data to decide where to use the seismometer and the heat probe that pours and may have to wait for any seismic activity to either detected.
"We have reached the Martian atmosphere at 19,800 kilometers per hour and all the sequence to reach the surface lasted only six and a half minutes," said InSight project manager Tom Hoffman at JPL. "During this short period of time, InSight had to carry out dozens of operations autonomously and to do without minus – and by all indications, exactly what our spacecraft did."
"The landing was exciting, but I'm looking forward to drilling," said InSight's lead researcher Bruce Banerdt [NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory]. "When the first images descend, our engineering and science teams will hit the ground, starting to plan where to put into practice our scientific instruments. Within two or three months, the arm will implement the mission's core tools, Seismic instruments for Inner Structure (SEIS) and Heat Flow and Physical Properties (HP3) tools. "
This is not actually NASA's first surface photo shot by InSight. Another one released earlier on Monday was a blurred photograph of the roof with a dusty lens above which the Martian horizon can be seen.
– NASAInSight (@NASAInSight) November 26, 2018
InSight also implemented two cubas called Marco A and B before landing, which CNN reported to be the first to be distributed in space. No craft was part of the mission itself, according to the Los Angeles Times, but they worked smoothly. Marco B also transmitted an additional photograph of the planet Mars in orbit. The data set of the two cubes will take two weeks to reach Earth. As their mission is complete, they will now enter an elliptical orbit around the Sun, although they expect them to continue to function for several weeks.
We'll always have it #Mars.
– NASA JPL (@NASAJPL) November 26, 2018
While those of us on Earth should wait a while to learn what InSight is learning about his new home, he had an amazing introduction.
On NASA, other institutions that have contributed to its mission are listed below:
A number of European partners, including the National Center for the Études Spatiale France (CNES) and the German Aerospace Center (DLR), support the InSight mission. CNES and the Institute of Physique du Globe de Paris have provided the SEIS with significant contributions from the Max Planck Institute for Soil Research (MPS) in Germany, the Swiss Institute of Technology (ETH) in Switzerland, the Imperial College and Oxford University of the United Kingdom JPL. DLR provided the HP3 tool with significant contributions from the Center for Space Research (CBK) of the Polish Academy of Sciences and Astronytics in Poland. Spain Centro de Astrobiología (CAB) provided wind sensors.