NASA’s InSight unmanned landing gear after landing on Mars was located on it under a slight bias, and experts hope that this will not affect the performance of the device, the US space agency said on Friday.
This landing device, worth 993 million USD, arrived on Monday to its scientific goal – a lava Martian plain called Elysium Plain – with a two-year mission aimed at deepening our knowledge of the processes of the formation of the Red Planet.
“The device is located on the surface of Mars under a slight slope (about 4 degrees) inside a shallow crater filled with sand and dust,” NASA said in a statement.
The design of the device InSight allows him to work safely when tilted up to 15 degrees relative to the horizontal.
Therefore, experts expect that the two main scientific instruments of this planting vehicle – a seismometer and a self-deepening probe for measuring the amount of heat under the surface of the planet – will work as normal.
“Unfortunately, there are no runways on Mars, so landing in the“ big sandbox ”, which lacks large stones, makes it easier to deploy the tools and start drilling the ground,” said InSight project manager Tom Hoffman from the Jet Propulsion Laboratory of NASA, USA .
The first images taken by the InSight after landing showed the absence of large stones in the vicinity of the scientific station. The presence of stones would significantly complicate the deployment of solar panels and scientific instruments of the probe, explained the scientists of the project InSight.