Discuss the significance of NASAï¿½s InSight Mission. Why knowing about the surface of Mars has become so much important in recent years?
Insight stands for Interior Exploration using Seismic Investigations, Geodesy and Heat Transport. It is a Lander designed by NASA to study deep interior of the Mars.
- It is part ofï¿½NASAï¿½sï¿½Discovery Program
- It marks the 21st US-launched Mars mission
- It will study its insides as to what it is made of, how that material is layered and how much heat seeps out of it
- It will be theï¿½first mission to peer deep beneath the Martian surface
- It will use the seismic waves generated byï¿½marsquakesï¿½to develop a map of the planetï¿½s deep interior
- The findings of Marsï¿½ formation will help betterï¿½understand how other rocky planets, including Earth, were and are created
Importance of Mars:
- Earth and Mars used to be similar. But this was before they took different paths 3.4 billion years ago. Mars stopped changing, while Earth continued to evolve. They turned out so different – Mars cold and dry, Venus and Mercury burning hot, and Earth hospitable to life
- Mars is neither too big nor too small. This means that it preserves the record of its formation and can give us insight into how the terrestrial planets formed
The mission is expected to study how Mars and other rocky worlds formed at the dawn of the solar system 4.6bn years ago. But notably, sending a probe to Mars, whether to land, orbit or fly past, is risky; only 40% of missions have succeeded so far.