Home sci-tech NASA lander captures ‘marsquakes’ and other Martian sounds

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NASA lander captures ‘marsquakes’ and other Martian sounds

by Ace Damon
NASA InSight

Marcia Dunn, Associated Press

Posted on October 1, 2019 2:43 pm.

Last updated Tuesday, October 1, 2019 3:55 PM EDT

CAPE CANAVERAL, Florida – NASA's InSight spacecraft on Mars captured the low rumble of marsquakes and a symphony of other sounds from another world.

Scientists released an audio sample on Tuesday. The sounds had to be enhanced for humans to hear.

The InSight seismometer has detected over 100 events, but only 21 are considered strong marsquake candidates. The rest could be marsquakes – or anything else. The French seismometer is so sensitive that it can hear the Martian wind, as well as the movements of the landing robot robot and other mechanical dinks and donks, as the team calls them.

"It was exciting, especially in the beginning, to hear the first vibrations of the land vehicle," said Constantinos Charalambous of Imperial College London, who helped provide the audio recordings. "You are wondering what is really happening on Mars while InSight stands in the open landscape," he added in a statement.

InSight arrived on Mars last November and recorded its first seismic crash in April.

Meanwhile, a German drilling instrument has been inactive for months. Scientists are trying to save the experiment to measure the planet's internal temperature.

The so-called mole should penetrate 5 meters below the Martian surface, but only reached 30 centimeters. Researchers suspect Martian sand is not providing the necessary friction to dig, causing the mole to jump helplessly rather than dig deeper and form a large pit around it.

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