Newsday, Nasa InSight probe finally lands on Mars

Mars InSight mission: What Nasa's trip to Red Planet aims to discover

NASA Has Landed On Mars

"Its new home is Elysium Planitia, a still, flat region where it's set to study seismic waves and heat deep below the surface of the Red Planet for a planned two-year mission", NASA tweeted. The nail-biting moment came early Tuesday Korea time, just six-and-a-half minutes after the robot hit the Martian atmosphere at nearly 20-thousand kilometers per hour.

- NASA's Dollars 993 million Mars InSight lander successfully touched down on the Red Planet to listen for quakes and study how rocky planets formed, the USA space agency said. It will spend the next 24 months - about one Martian year - collecting a wealth of data to unlock mysteries about how Mars formed and, by extension, the origins of the Earth and other rocky planets of the inner solar system.

In addition to the InSight telemetry, one of the cubesats, MarCO-B, returned an image of Mars taken shortly after the landing, as the spacecraft was passing 6,000 kilometers from the planet.

"Touch down confirmed!" Mission Control announced as NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory burst into applause.

After a seven-month journey, NASA's InSight spacecraft has finally touched down on Mars.

. The lander brought along a collection of scientific instruments, including a seismometer, which will be placed 16 feet underground and send back to Earth the first data from the interior of the planet. No lander has dug deeper than several inches, and no seismometer has ever worked on Mars.

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InSight also benefits from not being too picky about where it lands.

The first picture taken by InSight during landing.

Over the next two years, we will learn a lot more about Mars and hopefully find answers to such questions as if there are any signs of past life or if Mars now has any liquid water. Going into Monday's landing, the space agency was confident InSight would be able to pull off its arrival because the technology had already been tested on NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander, which made its Martian descent in 2008. Project manager Tom Hoffman said the spacecraft landed close to the bull's-eye, but NASA did not have yet have the final calculations. Once deployed on the surface, the HP3 self-penetrating heat flow probe-aptly nicknamed "the mole" -will pound the ground tens of thousands of times to eventually burrow as much as 5 meters below the surface.

After initially landing, InSight, short for Interior Exploration using Seismic Investigations Geodesy and Heat Transport, captured its first image of its surroundings.

In 2020, it will land another rover in an ancient lake bed to directly look for evidence of microbes, dead or alive.

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