InSight Mission | Why Mars?

March 19, 2018 • 1:00

InSight Roadshow coming to the Exploratorium April 18-22, 2018. https://www.exploratorium.edu/visit/calendar/insight-lander-april-18-to-22-2018

On mission launching in May 2018, the Mars lander InSight will give the Red Planet its first thorough checkup since it formed 4.5 billion years ago, the first outer-space robotic explorer to study in depth the "inner space" of Mars: its crust, mantle, and core. Studying the interior of Mars answers key questions about the early formation of rocky planets in our inner solar system—Mercury, Venus, Earth, and Mars. InSight also measures tectonic activity and meteorite impacts on Mars today. The lander will delve deep beneath the surface and seek the fingerprints of the processes that formed the terrestrial planets. It does so by measuring the planet's "vital signs": its "pulse" (seismology), "temperature" (heat flow), and "reflexes" (precision tracking).

This mission is part of NASA's Discovery Program for highly focused science missions that ask critical questions in solar system science.

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