NASA’s Insight Mars Lander “listens” for marsquakes on the Red Planet

NASA’s Insight lander the seismometer on Mars on Dec. 19, 2018. This was the first time that a seismometer that was ever placed on the surface of another planet. (Credits: NASA/JPL-Caltech)

NASA’s Insight Mars Lander has deployed its first instrument, a seismometer, on the surface of the Red Planet.

“New images of the lander show the seismometer on the ground, the copper-colored lining faintly illuminated in the Martian twilight,” said NASA in a statement Wednesday. “It seems as if all is calm and all is bright for Insight, on the way to the end of the year.”

The Insight mission, which is managed by NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, scientists with a wealth of data. By studying Mars’ deep interior, the mission is expected to provide valuable information about the formation of rocky worlds like the Earth.


The Mars Insight Lander reached the Red Planet on Nov. 26 after an epic journey of more than 300 million km, which took six months. Sensors on the Lander recently captured the very first “sounds” of Mars wind.

“Understanding the timetable of the activities on Mars is better gone than we had hoped for,” said Insight Project Manager Tom Hoffman, who is based at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., in the statement. “The seismometer safely on the ground is a great christmas present.”

The seismometer to study ground movement on the Red Planet, which is known as “marsquakes.”


“With the seismometer on the ground floor is like holding a phone up to your ear,” said Philippe Lognonné, principal investigator of SEIS of the Institut de Physique du Globe de Paris (IPGP) and Paris Diderot University, in the statement. “We are pleased that we are now in the best position to listen to the seismic waves from beneath the martian surface and from within.”

Mars looms ever larger in America space for the future.

In the last month, NASA announced that it has been chosen for the location where the Mars 2020 will land Rover on the Red Planet. The rover is expected that the march on Feb. 18, 2021.

NASA’s long-term goal is to have a manned mission to Mars in the 2030s. However, the former astronaut Buzz Aldrin thinks that a slightly later target date of 2040 is more realistic. In an interview in 2016, the Gemini 12 and Apollo 11 astronaut told Fox News that in 2040, the astronauts might have visited Mars’ moon Phobos, which could serve as a kind of stepping stone to the Red Planet.

Fox News’ Chris Ciaccia, contributed to this article.

Follow James Rogers on Twitter @jamesjrogers

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