NASA's InSight Mars Lander Set To Touch Down Monday

There are various factors that NASA needed to consider while choosing an arrival site.

Ken Farley, project scientist for Mars 2020 at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, said: "The Mars community has long coveted the scientific value of sites such as Jezero Crater, and a previous mission contemplated going there, but the challenges with safely landing were considered prohibitive".

Mars 2020 will launch from Cape Canaveral in Florida.

"Getting samples from this unique area will revolutionize how we think about Mars and its ability to harbor life", he added.

Scientists expect Mars 2020 to yield at least five different types of rock, including the kinds of clays and carbonates that are most likely to preserve chemical biosignatures.

Nasa wrote: "The landing will kick off a two-year mission in which InSight will become the first spacecraft to study Mars" deep interior.

NASA's InSight Mars Lander Set To Touch Down Monday

Jezero Crater, whose name comes from the Serbian word for lake, won out over three other finalist sites near the Martian equator: Midway and Northeast Syrtis, plus Columbia Hills (which is where NASA's Spirit rover roamed a decade ago).

"We're really excited. There's nothing as exciting as landing on Mars".

This mission will study the internal structure, the tectonic and seismic activity on Mars. Upon the landing of InSight, the twin CubeSats would navigate their way to the lander's position, allowing them to send information back to Earth.

And in the 2020s, NASA's next rover is likely to be joined by the European Space Agency's first rover, which is part of the European-Russian ExoMars exploration campaign. A huge river delta surrounds the crater and stretches for many miles in several directions. "The team will continue its work to truly understand the TRN system and the risks involved, and we will review the findings independently to reassure we have maximized our chances for success".

Automatic interplanetary station Mars InSight on the payments reach the surface of Mars on Monday, 26 November, 15:00 East coast time USA. InSight, short for Interior Exploration using Seismic Investigations, Geodesy and Heat Transport, is a Mars lander created to study the "inner space" of Mars: its crust, mantle, and core.