The InSight probe has landed on Mars
After nearly seven months of flight and covering 485 million kilometers, the InSight probe has landed on Mars. The landing maneuver went off without surprises. This is the first successful landing on Mars in six years.
Just before 9 pm. InSight probe touched the surface of Mars. The probe came to rest on the róThe volcanic wnin near róInSight mission to the Red Planet, at a site called Elysium Planitia. The landing site was chosen because of the reflection of theór possibly unattachedóconych seismic waves, which is the mainóThe main goal of the mission.
The InSight probe was launched atop an Atlas V rocket on May 5 this year. It is part of NASA’s Discovery program, which has been running since 1992. This is the first successful landing on Mars in six years and also the first ever mission dedicated to exploring the deep interior of Mars. It is expected to last two years.
Landing was the most difficult phase of the mission. Engineers have specified this maneuver „seven minutes of horror”. The probe entered the atmosphere of Mars at a speed of 19,800 kilometersów per hour. It then deployed its parachute and braking engines. In less than seven minutes, it exhausted its tremendous speed and settled safely on the planet’s surface. Below is the video of the flight controlów of the moment the landing was confirmed.
The signal confirming a successful landing has reached the controller of theóin the mission at exactly 20:53 Polish time, prompting cheers. A few minutes póLater the complexół also received confirmation from the lander’s radio, whichóre thus gave the signal that it was functioning after the landing. But this is not the end of the tension for engineersófrom the Jet Propusion Laboratory. Teamół will wait until 8:35 p.m. tomorrow to confirm the deployment of solar panels. Without power, the lander will not survive, not móThe probe has already probed the interior of the Red Planet.
On board the probe was HP3 mole – scientific instrument designed and manufactured by Polish engineersóIn from the company Astronika, whichóra, as coordinator of the production process, engaged several Polish centers for subcontractingóin scientific, m.in. Polish Academy of Sciences, the Space Research Center of the Polish Academy of Sciences, the Institute of Aviation the Institute of Welding, the Technical University of LóThe signal confirms the successful landing of the spacecraft. Próbnik to measure the heat flux from the planet’s interior is one of the mission’s most important instruments and will be inserted at a depth of 5 metersóinto the Martian soil.
The HP3 Mole is a complete device entirely made in Poland, which is groundbreaking for the Polish space sector, because for the first time ever a Polish company and its subcontractors are supplying a complete subsystem rather than individual components or processes. It will be tasked with studying the history of Mars’ formation, studying the changes that are taking place in the planet’s structure, temperature, studying the planet’s core. Never before has any device penetrated the Martian surface to such depths.
After a safe landing, it was time for the crux of the mission – Mars exploration. But the probe will not start working right away. Instrument deployment processóIn scientific terms, it may take up to three months.
The first image transmitted by the InSight probe as part of a communications test. The dark dots are dust on the shield.
Wspólna US-French-German mission will monitor the seismic activity of Mars. The purpose of the InSight mission is to conduct geophysical studies on Mars, whichóre will provide groundbreaking information about the planet’s internal structure and its coóhe geological activity of today. The mission will provide a better understanding of the evolution and formation of Mars, and in ogóle Earth-type planets.
First, using a robotic arm, the lander will deploy two scientific instruments – the ultra-precise SEIS (Seismic Experiment for Interior Structure) seismometer and the aforementioned Polish próheat tank – Mole HP3. The SEIS instrument will monitor the planet’s pulse by detecting vibrations caused by surface quakes, meteorite impactsów and other such events.
The third majoróThe Rotation and Interior Structure Experiment (RISE) is an important scientific instrument – instrument used to measure the Doppler shift of the signalóin between InSight and Earth’s. It will allow to detect small variations in Mars’ rotation axis, which should give some idea about the planet’s core, including its size.