HomeScienceNASA’s Insight Just Recorded the Biggest Quake on Mars

NASA’s Insight Just Recorded the Biggest Quake on Mars

Credit: NASA

In May, the NASA InSight lander recorded a Marsquake at least five times larger than the previous largest quake on Mars back in August 2021.

The Marsquake occurred on May 4 and was detected at a magnitude of 4.7.

Furthermore, InSight continued detecting waves from the quake for around 10 hours.

It’s an exciting condition as all previous Marsquakes’ after-effects had decreased within an hour.

A seismologist from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich, John Clinton, said this single Marsquake released energy equivalent to the cumulative energy from previous Marsquakes NASA has seen so far.

Insight did launch in May 2018 and landed on the Red Planet six months later.

It has been using its seismometer to record activity on Mars, which is much calmer than Earth.

Recording Marsquakes helps NASA gain new insights into the planet’s crust, mantle, and core.

It showed characteristics of both Marsquakes types: high-frequency waves with fast but shorter vibrations and low-frequency waves with larger amplitude.

Moreover, the quake happened on Sol 1222 of InSight’s mission (a sol in one day on Mars; it’s around 40 minutes longer than Earth’s day).

NASA stated that Insight has only a few weeks to live since its energy-generating solar arrays were covered by dust.

You can learn more about the research in the journal Geophysical Research Letters.

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Reananda Hidayat Permono
Reananda Hidayat Permono
Completed his Master of Science - MS, Petroleum Geology from Curtin University, Perth, Australia.

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