NASA’s Rover Perseverance can pick up sounds from Mars; Listen

posted on 01/04/2022 17:47 / updated 01/04/2022 18:10

NASA's Perseverance Rover Can Capture Sounds From Mars - (Credit: Reproduction / NASA)

NASA’s Perseverance Rover Can Capture Sounds From Mars – (Credit: Reproduction / NASA)

The sounds of Mars captured by a NASA (United States Space Agency) robot helped scientists to better understand the conditions on the planet. With the recordings, it was found that the speed of sound is different from Earth and that, in some seasons of the year, the planet emits less sounds than in others. (Listen to the sounds at the end of the story).

the microphone of perseverance rover — robot that is part of the mission Mars 2020 Perseverancewhose main objective is to study the planet’s astrobiology — managed to capture the sounds and, from the recordings, a study identified that the speed of sound is slower on the Red Planet than on Earth, with a deep silence prevailing in most of the time.

The study — published in the journal nature this Friday (4/1) — reveals how fast sound travels through the extremely thin atmosphere, composed mainly of carbon dioxide, and what it might sound like to human ears. In addition, scientists used the audio recordings to probe subtle changes in air pressure on the planet.

The big difference found is that on Mars the speed of sound is slower than on Earth, where sounds normally travel at 767 miles per hour (343 meters per second). But on Mars, bass sounds travel at about 240 meters per second, while higher sounds move at 250 meters per second.

See more images from the mission perseverance

  • NASA’s Ingenuity Mars Helicopter can be seen hovering during its third flight on April 25, 2021, as seen by the left navigation camera.
    Reproduction / NASA

  • This composite of two images shows the hole drilled by NASA’s Perseverance rover during its second sampling attempt.
    Reproduction / NASA

  • On August 27, 2021, NASA’s Perseverance rover captured this image of the tower laden with science instruments at the end of its robotic arm approaching the rock dubbed “Rochette”.
    Reproduction / NASA

  • This illustration shows the placement of Perseverance’s two microphones. The microphone on the mast is part of the SuperCam science instrument. The microphone on the side of the rover is designed to capture the sounds of entry, descent and landing for audience engagement.

  • NASA’s Ingenuity helicopter unlocked its rotor blades, allowing them to rotate freely, on April 7, 2021, the 47th Martian day, or sol, of the mission.

    Reproduction / NASA

According to Sylvestre Maurice, an astrophysicist at the University of Toulouse, in France, and lead author of the study, the scientists believed that the robot’s microphone was broken, given the silence on the planet. “One of the most striking features of sound recordings is the silence that seems to prevail on Mars,” he said.

For Baptiste Chide, who also participated in the study, the Martian silence is a consequence of Mars having a thin atmosphere. “Mars is very quiet because of low atmospheric pressure.”

However, they explain that the pressure there changes with the seasons, so in the coming months Mars could get “noisier”. “We are entering a season of high pressure. Perhaps the acoustic environment on Mars is less quiet than when we landed,” explained Chide.

Listen to the sounds of the planet:

About Raju Singh

Raju has an exquisite taste. For him, video games are more than entertainment and he likes to discuss forms and art.

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