The Martian station InSight has completed its mission


NASA announced the cancellation of the InSight mission, a geophysical station that worked on Mars for four years. Both attempts to communicate with InSight failed, indicating that the station had run out of charge. Just in case, the mission team will continue to listen to InSight for a while in case the station sends a signal. However, NASA in its message writesthat it is unlikely.

What happened?

The InSight station (Interior Exploration using Seismic Investigations, Geodesy and Heat Transport) has been operating on Mars since 2018, investigating the internal structure of the planet, as well as its tectonic activity. However, every year the station lost available power due to the dustiness of the solar panels that provide it with power. And on December 15, she sent her last signal and stopped get in touch

Will they not try to save the mission?

Despite the fact that NASA hopedthat InSight will continue to operate until January 2023, the agency previously said accepted a decision that will announce the end of the mission if the station misses two consecutive communication sessions with the ground control center. This did not happen and NASA will no longer take steps to restore communication.

However, the InSight team will continue to monitor the station for some time if it sends a signal. For example, a strong gust of wind can save the mission for a while, which will blow away the dust from the panels. However, as the agency itself writes, such an event is unlikely.

Of the three InSight instruments, only one, the SEIS seismograph, has continued to operate so far. Thanks to him, InSight succeeded to collect information about the structure of Mars at a depth of 200 meters, as well as to evaluate the size of the core and the thickness of the crust of the planet. In addition, SEIS heard falling on Mars of meteorites and helped to find a possible source of magma under the surface of the planet.

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