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InSight Mars landed safely and is commencing on its mission


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https://www.cbsnews.com/news/mars-landing-nasa-mars-lander-insight-on-course-for-touchdown-today-2018-11-26/

 

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After a six-month voyage from Earth, NASA's InSight Mars lander will slam into the thin Martian atmosphere Monday afternoon to begin a nail-biting six-and-a-half-minute descent to the surface. After streaking through space at some 12,300 mph, the landing will kick off a billion-dollar mission to probe the red planet's hidden interior.

 

"The goal of InSight is nothing less than to better understand the birth of the Earth, the birth of the planet we live on, and we're going to do that by going to Mars," said Principle Investigator Bruce Banerdt.

 

On Earth, plate tectonics and the constantly churning mantle have altered the planet's deep interior, obscuring its history and evolution. But Mars is a smaller planet and much less active than Earth, retaining the "fingerprints" of those earlier processes.

 

"By mapping out these boundaries, these various different sections of the inside of the planet, we can then understand better how the planet formed and how our planet got to be the way it is where we can actually live and play and have a good time," Banerdt said. "... So, we're going to go to Mars."

 

A final correction maneuver was planned Sunday afternoon to slightly tweak InSight's trajectory and ensure an on-target landing on a broad plain known as Elysium Planitia.

 

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