NASA’s InSight Lander is active on the mars, and recently it deployed the first seismometer on the planet. This is the first time humans have deployed a seismometer to analyze the seismic action on the planet. On 3rd February, the InSight Lander has deployed the thermal shield of the Seismometer to protect it from dust storms and heat of the sun. The shield is named as “Wind and Thermal” Shield, which will protect the seismometer from external interference while taking the seismic readings.
Bruce Banerdt, who is working as Principal Investigator of InSight Mission from Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena said that the Heat is the real enemy of the seismometer. The heat may interfere with the seismic readings and provide false signals. As the temperature on the Mars fluctuates a lot, there was the need of putting a Thermal shield over the device to keep it safe. On the normal martian day, the temperature rises to 97-degree Celsius and dips down to the same in the negative values night time. The shield helps to maintain a stable temperature to take accurate readings and keeping the device safe for a long time.
The ordinary course to keep such devices safe is to bury them in the ground. But as it is not possible on the distant planet, scientists chose the Wind and Thermal shield protection. The InSight mission has two critical devices on the planet. One is SEIS the seismometer and HP3 (short for “Heat Flow and Physical Properties Package” which will be deployed within a few weeks. The Robotic arm of the InSights rover deployed the SEIS on December 19th. The Robotic arm is made of the Wax-actuated five claws to pick up or drop the samples and instruments on the planet.
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