NASA engineers successfully land InSight robotic spacecraft on Mars

Postado Novembro 30, 2018

The InSight will start to probe into Mars subsurface; giving researchers the first exclusive looked into the Red Planet's internal strata.

Now that the landing part is over, the team needs to check that the solar arrays have opened up sufficiently to get the spacecraft fully up and running. Officials say it's going to give scientists new insight into what's inside the Red Planet. These charge the probe's batteries each day to help it carry out its missions that include listening for seismic vibrations in Mars, shedding light on the planet's interior structure, and estimating how many meteorites might batter/are on a collision course with the planet.

The lander plunged through the thin Martian atmosphere at about 2:47 p.m. EST (1947 GMT), heatshield first, and used a supersonic parachute to slow down.

Over the next few "sols" - or Martian days of 24 hours, 39½ minutes - flight controllers will assess the health of InSight's all-important robot arm and its science instruments.

Anticipating that anyone watching will likely have a number of questions about how a giant hunk of metal and on-board computer systems can make a safe entry into Mars' atmosphere, NASA has also put together a helpful explainer of how InSight plans its historic touchdown. Using its robotic arm, InSight will pluck SEIS from the lander's top deck to place it carefully on the dusty surface.

NASA's InSight lander before touching down on the surface of Mars. Verification will come from NASA's Odyssey spacecraft, now orbiting Mars.

As reported by CNN, InSight, or Interior Exploration using Seismic Investigations, Geodesy and Heat Transport, traveled 301,223,981 miles at a top speed of 6,200 mph to reach Mars after launching on May 5, 2018.

'This accomplishment represents the ingenuity of America and our global partners and it serves as a testament to the dedication and perseverance of our team. "The best of NASA is yet to come, and it is coming soon". Project manager Tom Hoffman said the spacecraft landed close to the bull's-eye, but NASA did not have yet have the final calculations.

The basic design of InSight was inherited from Phoenix spacecraft, which landed on Mars on May 25, 2008, he added.

The twin Mars Cube One, or MarCO, cubesats launched as secondary payloads with the InSight spacecraft in May and flew by Mars as InSight landed on the planet. The space agency has revealed in its latest update that the probe has also successfully deployed its solar panels - needed to power the lander - on the Red Planet.