The first image of the heart of Mars – space and astronomy

To find what is hidden in the depths of the heart, one must know how to understand every thrill and every shock. This is exactly what NASA’s Insight Lander did to Mars, mapping the planet ” heart ‘for the first time, thanks to research into the spread of seismic waves that shake it. A kind of ‘ultrasound’ that has never been tried before on a planet other than Earth, making it possible to estimate The thickness of the crust, The Mantle structure And this Core size.
The results of three international studies that have won the cover of a science journal, which are now critical to shedding light on the formation and evolution of the super ‘busy’ Red Planet, the Emirates Hope study, China 2020 on the Tianwen-1 life hunt.

Per insight, Landed on Mars at the end of 2018“Understanding a patient’s health was like listening to his heartbeat,” comments Filippo Giacomo Caroso, a researcher at the INAF space agency and astronomy and planetarium. “This is thanks to a very important seismometer, which is capable of detecting the size of a hydrogen atom by surface tremor.”

Clouds move in NASA’s Insight Lander cheese seismometer, protected by a small dome (Source: NASA / JBL-Caltech)

NASA Lander Earthquakes began to be detected in February 2019, “Gives us the first direct confirmation of their existence: all recorded tremors are less than 4, most often they are superficial.” Their spread underground “gives us The first direct observation of the internal structure of the planetUntil now, we have only been able to deviate from theoretical models. “

Below the Insight landing site, near the Mars equator, the data shows Top tile It was passed Multiple layers With at least two or three interfaces. “By expanding the data across the planet, we reduce the presence of a crust The average thickness ranges from 24 to 72 km”, Refers to Caroso. Continuing towards the center of the planet, under the rock layer of the mantle, is then Big core, Which has a radius of approx 1,830 kilometers, Half of the planet.

NASA’s Insight Lander recorded an event on Mars on July 25, 2019. This path is being explored to determine if it is an earthquake or other type of disturbance (Source: NASA / JBL-Caltech)

“What is the real surprise The core still appears fluid Not as solid as we thought: it is less dense than expected, formed by a mixture of iron and nickel with other lighter components and enriched with sulfur, ”explains the INAF expert. The presence of a thin mantle without mineral bridgemanite instead of the Earth’s mantle indicates that the primitive center of Mars may have cooled faster than Earth: the resulting heat generated electric currents leading to a geodynamo that would have created a magnetic field.
According to Caroso, “These data, along with the magnetization of the Martian crust measured by Insight, In the past There may have been one Earth-like magnetic field, Can act as a shield to protect any life form from radiation and solar wind “.

Veronica Tucker

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