Wednesday, 20 November, 2019

What's that sound? NASA records 'marsquake'

NASA InSight NASA lander captures marsquakes and other Martian sounds, including wind
Sandra Phillips | 04 October, 2019, 05:10

One of the InSight's objectives is to study how seismic waves move through the interior of Mars. This will help scientists learn more about the inner structure of our neighboring planet.

NASA has turned Marsquake data into sounds you can actually listen to. After first recording a unusual, possible Marsquake this past April, the experiment has now counted at least 21 quakes among 100 vibrational signals.

Two ancient sites on Mars that hosted an abundance of water in the planet's early history have been recommended as the final candidates for the landing site of the 2020 ExoMars rover and surface science platform: Oxia Planum and Mawrth Vallis. Out of more than 100 events detected to date, about 21 are strongly considered to be the quakes.

The remainder could be quakes as well, but the science team has not ruled out other causes, said JPL. In order to be audible to the human ear, the recordings had to be processed slightly.

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In an interview with The Telegraph, Green said that the upcoming robotic missions to Mars, one headed by NASA and the other by its European counterpart ESA, are very likely to yield the desired results: the confirmation that there is life elsewhere in the Universe. "I've been anxious about that because I think we're close to finding it and making some announcements", he told Great Britain's The Telegraph. The study on the quakes suggests that the crust of the Red Planet is similar to the blend of the Earth's and the Moon's crust.

According to the researchers, the sounds of the earthquakes indicate that the crust of Mars is "a mixture of" earth and the moon's crust. Mars is full of craters, which makes it a bit more like the moon.

"Evening is also when peculiar sounds that the InSight team has nicknamed "dinks and donks" become more prevalent", NASA stated. "You're imagining what's really happening on Mars as InSight sits on the open landscape".

In one of the sound samples, a odd whistling can also be heard. 'It's been exciting, especially in the beginning, hearing the first vibrations from the lander, ' says InSight team member Constantinos Charalambous.

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