Mars rover landing prompts 49ers-inspired celebration by NASA employees

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The dramatic arrival of the $993m (R13.75bn) spacecraft - created to listen for quakes and tremors as a way to unveil the Red Planet's inner mysteries, how it formed billions of years ago and, by extension, how other rocky planets like Earth took shape - marked the eighth successful landing on Mars in Nasa's history.

The Timken Company has a manufacturing facility and Samson Rope is headquartered in Ferndale, and both have a history of involvement with space rovers and shuttle missions. As that name implies, the goal of the lander spacecraft is to carry out geological research, helping scientists to better get to grips with how the planet is constructed from core to crust.

Samson is behind the synthetic rope serving various other purposes on the space station, shuttles and landers.

Described as "a tool to allow users to explore and learn about a potential future Mars colony", the base depicted is "grounded in real possibilities, informed by real science with direct guidance and feedback from NASA and JPL scientists about the technological and material constraints for building human habitation on the red planet".

These instruments are created to collect data for at least the next two years in order to better understand the internal structure and geology of the Red Planet. Also tomorrow commences a stimulating contemporary chapter for InSight.

The MarCOs have also supported scientific exploration at Mars, even though they do not carry any scientific equipment.

The InSight probe landed in the highlands area Elysium, which is located on the equator of Mars, on Monday evening, November 26, Moscow time. On clear days, the panels will provide InSight with between 600 and 700 watts - enough to power the blender on your kitchen counter, NASA said.

The spacecraft arrived at Mars after a perilous, supersonic plunge through its red skies that took just six minutes.

The landing signal was relayed to NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in Pasadena, California, via NASA's two small experimental Mars Cube One (MarCO) CubeSats, which launched on the same rocket as InSight and followed the lander to Mars.

The round, dome-shaped seismometer will sit on the surface and sense vibrations, or, as they're known on Mars, Marsquakes.

Thomas Zurbuchen is the associate administrator for NASA's Science Mission Directorate at the agency's headquarters in Washington. NASA's next mission, the Mars 2020 rover, will prowl for rocks that might contain evidence of ancient life.

"Having successfully brought all the data back from InSight during its exciting entry, descent and landing (EDL) sequence - what you see before you is an image taken roughly 4,700 miles from Mars, about 10-15 minutes after EDL itself", explained MarCO chief engineer Andy Klesh.

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