InSight Mars lander sends back selfie after fiery landing

27 November, 2018, 07:15 | Author: Courtney Reynolds
  • Touchdown: NASA's InSight Lands on Mars (VIDEO)

But that doesn't seem to have been the case here, and touchdown was confirmed at 19.50GMT causing NASA's mission control to burst into celebration.

Across North America, live viewings were held at museums, planetariums and libraries, as well as Times Square in NY.

Now that NASA's InSight probe has successfully landed, you might wonder what's next for it. This accomplishment represents the ingenuity of America and our worldwide partners, and it serves as a testament to the dedication and perseverance of our team. Better photos are expected in the days ahead, after the dust covers come off. It launched May 5.

"To look deep into Mars, the lander must be at a place where it can stay still and quiet for its entire mission". The suitcase-size spacecraft, called MarCO, are the first cube satellites to fly into deep space.

InSight's perilous descent through the Martian atmosphere had stomachs churning and nerves stretched to the max. Using the lander NASA plans to study the processes that shaped the rocky planets of the solar system. While surveying the landing site during the planning phase of InSight's mission, scientists studied the ejecta from small impact craters scattered across Elysium Planitia. The landing itself is a tricky maneuver.

The lander survived "seven minutes of terror" before it touched down - a period that could have seen the rover destroyed. In less time than it takes to hard-boil an egg, InSight will have to slowed from 12,300 miles per hour to 5 miles per hour before it gently lands on the surface of Mars, according to NASA.

However, it is notoriously hard to touch down on Mars.

The US space agency's robotic lander is on a mission to find out how warm and geologically active the planet is.

Only six-and-a-half harrowing minutes later, after ejecting its heatshield, deploying a supersonic parachute and firing retrorockets, its speed had dramatically slowed to a jogging pace after traversing the 130 kilometers between Mars's upper atmosphere and the planet's arid surface.

InSight will need to wait for the dust from landing to settle before it can really get on with business.

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InSight will spend 24 months, about one Martian year, examining Mars. Peak heating of the protective heat shield will reach 2,700 degrees Fahrenheit two minutes later, which then decelerates. This is when the intense heat caused a temporary drop in the radio signal from the craft. This tension quickly turned to excitement once InSight landed, however."The enthusiasm here is incredible", Bridenstine said. It will slow down until it reaches a consistent 5 miles per hour.

NASA's science chief, Thomas Zurbuchen said previously: "As humanity, as explorers - we're batting at less than 50 percent".

NASA's InSight spacecraft opens a window into the "inner space" of Mars.

NASA officials say InSight's instruments should be up and running in about two or three months. "We get this piece of shit fucking mic dude".

"The InSight team can rest a little easier tonight now that we know the spacecraft solar arrays are deployed and recharging the batteries", Tom Hoffman, NASA's InSight project manager here at the agency's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), said in a statement.

InSight's first photo from the martian surface.

A second instrument will burrow five metres into the ground of Mars, measuring the planet's temperature, while a third experiment will determine how Mars wobbles on its axis.

"I've just received confirmation that there are no rocks in front of the lander", he told AFP.

InSight is short for Interior Exploration using Seismic Investigations, Geodesy and Heat Transport.

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