InSight, NASA’s latest Mars lander, successfully touched down on the surface of the Mars at 1:22 am Tuesday, IST, a successful landing after an almost seven-month journey through deep space. InSight sent the official "beep" to NASA to signal that it was alive and well, including a photo of the Martian surface where it landed. And now, InSight’s two-year mission has begun, one that entails listening for Marsquakes and will drill 5m down into Mars’s crust, to assess the planet’s temperature.
The Gaurdian- "The mission is set to last for two Earth years – which is a little over one Mars year. The information it gathers should help scientists to better understand how Earth and other planets in the solar system were formed at the dawn of the solar system"
📸 Wish you were here! @NASAInSight sent home its first photo after #MarsLanding:— NASA (@NASA) November 26, 2018
InSight’s view is a flat, smooth expanse called Elysium Planitia, but its workspace is below the surface, where it will study Mars’ deep interior. pic.twitter.com/3EU70jXQJw
"Today, we successfully landed on Mars for the eighth time in human history," NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine said. "InSight will study the interior of Mars and will teach us valuable science as we prepare to send astronauts to the Moon and later to Mars. This accomplishment represents the ingenuity of America and our international 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.
Our @NASAInSight spacecraft stuck the #MarsLanding!— NASA (@NASA) November 26, 2018
Its new home is Elysium Planitia, a still, flat region where it’s set to study seismic waves and heat deep below the surface of the Red Planet for a planned two-year mission. Learn more: https://t.co/fIPATUugFo pic.twitter.com/j0hXTjhV6I
It was launched in May 5. To reach Mars, InSight cruised 301,223,981 miles at a top speed of 6,200 miles per hour in space, followed by two cube satellites.
"We've studied Mars from orbit and from the surface since 1965, learning about its weather, atmosphere, geology and surface chemistry," said Lori Glaze, acting director of the Planetary Science Division in NASA's Science Mission Directorate. "Now we finally will explore inside Mars and deepen our understanding of our terrestrial neighbor as NASA prepares to send human explorers deeper into the solar system."
The MarCO satellites flew over the Red Planet as InSight performed its landing, coming within 2,175 miles of the surface. InSight sent out multiple signals during its fall that the MarCO satellites received, deciphered, and then sent back to Earth. That gave NASA engineers an almost real-time understanding of how each step in the landing process occurred.