Mon. Jan 24th, 2022

NASA Insight Lander in Selfie.  The spacecraft's solar panels have round discs on either side of the probe.

Last Friday, NASA Insight Lander was forced to enter safe mode A Martian dust storm has swept over its position. Running There are storms Lander’s solar panel has reduced the amount of sunlight, so mission controllers have reduced its activity. Empty miniMom to reduce the pressure on the battery.

Contact with Insight was restored on Monday, and the investigation team found that the craft was in a stable condition. Similar storms Opportunity rover is over Mission, The rover’s battery ran out and NASA could not communicate with the craft.

Since landing on Mars in 2018, the Insight mission has provided important science, several of which Papers Published last July, which describes the interior of Mars, from its crust to its core. But the investigationIt has expired With Frustration, too, later Failure Its “mole” device which was meant to be a major part of the mission. Dust also had a problem: In June 2021, the amount of dust accumulated on the probe’s solar panel Threatened the whole mission. NASA engineers were forced McGeeA solution, Commanding Dirty bit drop probe in front of paneln An attempt to remove dust.

Unfortunately, the energy required to perform these dust-clearing techniques becomes even more difficult to pull because the available energy of the lander is depleted, a NASA Release Explained this week. The team believes the lander could be out of safe mode next week (Depending on the weather), which will give them more flexibility in how they direct the investigation.

Insights The mission is Planned to finish Until December 2022. If Previous Close Calls Any guide, the lander may become unharmed from the recent dust crash.

More: Martin Dust could complete NASA’s Insight mission in a few months

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