Friday , March 24 2023

Looking Mission to Mars: why is it so hard to come down on the red planet? | BBC Trade | Technology and science | science


It is the first space probe to explore the heart & # 39; Mars. And is scheduled to land on the red plant on Monday.

The Insight mission has instruments that allow digs the planet's surface to a depth never reached and measure seismic movements of the red planet.

Insight, NASA project with the participation of & # 39; European partners, will be the first mission to place the sismografi on Martian soil.

The probe left in & # 39; & # 39 tightly 5, May, and landing & # 39; this Monday – if it happens according to plan – will be spectacular achievement.

Landing on Mars is so it is difficult to about two attempts failed.

Why is it so hard to come down on Mars?

The probe, which is & # 39; six meters long and weighs 700 kilograms, is scheduled to drop in & # 39; fixed region called Elyseum Planitia, Which NASA describes as "the greatest park on Mars".

To land in the right place, Insight will enter the Martian atmosphere at & # 39; & # tranche of 39; & # 39 with only 24km, 10km.

Entry into the atmosphere and descent to the surface requires very complex maneuvers.

The probe will enter the Martian atmosphere b & # 39; Speed six times higher than bullet b & # 39; speed and must be reduced by & # 39; dramatically, he explained Jonathan Amos, Of the BBC science correspondent.

European recent attempt, in 2016, ended with & # 39; supera crashed against the surface.

Insight will enter the Martian atmosphere b & # 39; 19,800 kilometers per hour and must reduce its speed just 8 kph. That extreme deceleration take place an area of ​​& # 39; a little less than seven & # 39; minutes.

One of the difficulties is that the atmosphere & # 39; Mars has only 1% of the density of Earth's atmosphere, so there is little friction to reduce the speed of the vessel.

NASA hopes to succeed by mixing & # 39; its tools: heat-resistant capsule, parachute and retro-rocket to reduce probe.

The agency & # 39; space & # 39; the United States explained that when entering the Martian atmosphere capsule to withstand a temperature of & # 39; about 1,500 degrees Celsius.

"We have done everything we can meet with & # 39; success," he said. Julie Chen Wertz, One of the mission scientists.

"But it's really very, very difficult to drop on another planet."

"We are not & # 39; aħniex say they will achieve it easily, because they'll never get & # 39; they are surprised that Mars can & # 39; give you."

Martian earthquake

Insight will make the first Detailed X-ray & # 39; inside & # 39; Mars and will continue & # 39; on the red planet 728 days, about Martian year or about two Earth years.

The name of the probe is an acronym for Interior Exploration using & # 39; Seismic Investigations, Geodesy and Heat Transport (Inland Exploration b & # 39; Sigiżmi Seismic, Geodesy and Heat Transport).

The ship sismometri, one English and one French, trying to catch Martian earthquake produced by tectonic movements or meteorite impacts.

And the study of seismic vibrations will allow the study of rock layers & # 39; inside & # 39; Mars, the crust, the mantle and the core.

"An earthquake is almost like a flash & # 39; lamp", explained a main scientist of the mission, Bruce Banerdt.

"This tune the planet's interior b & # 39; seismic waves. the seismometers is like a camera that collects those waves to compose images. Pixel by pixel rebuild 3D representation of & # 39; the interior of the planet. "

Another instrument will penetrate the Martian soil to a depth of & # 39; five meters to measure the heat out of the interior of the planet.

And the probe also carries device developed by Spanish scientists, Twins, allowing you to measure the speed and wind temperature, and an instrument to measure the variations in the rotation of the Earth.

Mars and Earth

"Scientists know the internal structure of the Earth Cradle and have models to explain the beginning of the Solar System more than 4,500 million years ago", explained. Jonathan Amos, BBC scientific correspondent, who will accompany the descent from the center to monitor the operation, the Propulsion Laboratory Jets NASA, JPL for its acronym in English, f & # 39; California.

"But the World is just window in & # 39; that story and Mars will allow better understand how the planet rocks form and evolve over thousands of & # 39; years," said Amos.

Insight will help understand astronomisti as the evolution of & # 39; Mars and Earth was so different and what factors were essential to our planet to be habitable.

Monday spaceships f & # 39; Minerto call together Cube Mars One, or Marcos, Which were separated by just Insight after launch, were traveling to Mars as part of a separate NASA experiment.

Marco is the first mission in space deep & # 39; CubeSats, class & # 39; Ships using miniature technology.

If Marcos arrives b & # 39; success on Mars, try to transmit data from Insight as it enters the atmosphere and the Martian lands, and the event can & # 39; is followed by & # 39; direct way through the NASA television.

If the experiment works, it can & # 39; be the beginning of & # 39; a new type of & # 39; data communication & # 39; space missions to Earth, according to the space agency.

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