Comtuter and Internet News Channel
Space probe "Insight", launched on Tuesday from the Vandenberg airbase in California, began its six-month mission to Mars. The device is expected to approach Mars in November. But what will he find there?
The population of robots on Mars seems to be already quite large, why send one more?
Illustrator and astrologer James Tuttle Keane talks about the internal structure of the red planet and explains the uniqueness of the mission "Insight".
The research apparatus will land in the region of the Eliziy Highlands, north of the boundary between the cratered mountainous region and low plains.
Nearby, further to the south in the same region is the crater of Gale, which is now exploring the rover "Churiositi".
After planting "Insight" will begin installation of devices on the surface of Mars, it will take more than two months.
"Insight" will deliver a SEIS seismometer to Mars. After its installation using a special manipulator, the seismometer will begin to study the deep layers of Mars.
SEIS has sufficient sensitivity to detect seismic waves from impacts of meteorites on the surface of the planet. The study of these waves will give scientists an idea of the structure of Mars from the cortex to the core.
Also the probe will wait "quakes" – scientists still do not know if there is any geological activity on Mars, and "Insight" will help to answer this question.
Today, scientists do not know whether the internal structure of the red planet resembles the structure of the Earth – with a solid inner and liquid outer part of the nucleus. Understand whether Mars is similar to Earth inside – one of the main tasks "Insight".
Previously, seismological methods were used to study the internal structure of the satellite: astronauts program "Apollo" in the period from 1969 to 1972 measured the strength "moonquakes".
Installed on "Insight" the HP3 thermal sensor can be buried to a depth of up to five meters and measure the amount of energy released by the planet’s core.
These measurements will help to understand whether the composition of the soil of Mars is similar to the Earth and the Moon, and how the red planet could have formed.
The experimental RISE antenna will allow precise location of the probe from the Earth.
Receiving radio signals from the probe, scientists will be able to use the Doppler effect to track the movement of the north pole of the planet as Mars rotates around the Sun.
The study of the movement of the pole, and hence the axis of rotation of the planet, will allow scientists to understand the size of the core of Mars, as well as whether it is solid or partially liquid.
Mission "Insight" will last 728 terrestrial days. The probe is expected to allow us to study the history of our nearest neighbor on the solar system as never before, up to the formation of this planet 4.6 billion years ago.