"InSight is going take the heartbeat and vital signs of the Red Planet for an entire Martian year, two Earth years". It will explore the planet's deep interior and analyze seismic activity or "marsquakes".
The audio is best listened to with headphones on and sub woofer speakers. "We want to be sure that each operation that we perform on Mars is safe, so we set our safety monitors to be fairly sensitive initially".
Scientists estimated the northwest wind to be 10-15 miles per hour. The winds were consistent with the direction of dust devil streaks in the landing area, which were observed from orbit.
"This is the first time on the surface of Mars that we've had instruments that can detect up to the frequency that humans can hear", Tom Pike, a scientist on the InSight project who focuses on the sensors, said during a news conference unveiling the recording.
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"But one of the things our mission is dedicated to is measuring motion on Mars, and naturally that includes motion caused by sound waves", he said. The sounds were recorded by an air pressure sensor inside the lander that part of a weather station, as well as the seismometer on the deck of the spacecraft.
In a few weeks, it will be placed on the Martian surface by InSight's robotic arm, then covered by a domed shield to protect it from wind and temperature changes. They stick out from the lander and are referred to by NASA as looking like "a pair of ears". "It's like InSight is cupping its ears and hearing the Mars wind beating on it", he said.
Although the rumble that InSight detected serves as the first sampling of Martian sounds, there's lots more to come. NASA recommends that you hear the recording with listening equipment, because it's an eerie mix of low pitch and wind. "But we know that everything is a little different for the lander on Mars, so faults are not unusual", Hoffman said.
The craft will also have an on board camera that will serve the extremely sci-fi goal of "detect the sound of the instrument's laser as it zaps different materials".
InSight, which landed on 26 November 2018, will study the inside of Mars to learn how planets, moons and meteorites with rocky surfaces, including the Earth and its Moon, formed.