Noises and vibrations of four meteoroids striking the surface of Mars were recorded by a NASA lander.
Researchers revealed on Monday that the Mars InSight instrument picked up seismic and acoustic signals from many impacts that occurred in 2020 and 2021. The impact positions, which were up to 180 miles (290 kilometers) from the lander, were verified by a spacecraft in orbit around the red planet.
Given Mars’ proximity to the asteroid belt and the planet’s thin atmosphere, which tends to prevent incoming space rocks from burning up, the InSight team anticipated collecting a significant number of meteoroid hits. However, due of conflicting noise from the Martian wind or seasonal fluctuations in the atmosphere, the seismometer, which was built by the French, may have missed hits. According to NASA, scientists now know what to search for, which will probably lead to an increase in detections.