“Now we finally have a front-row view to what we call ‘the seven minutes of terror’ while landing on Mars. From the explosive opening of the parachute to the landing rockets’ plume sending dust and debris flying at touchdown, it’s absolutely awe-inspiring.”Source: Michael Watkins, Director of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory
AT A GLANCE:
New video from NASA’s Mars 2020 Perseverance rover chronicles major milestones during the final minutes of its entry, descent, and landing (EDL) on the Red Planet on February 18 as the spacecraft plummeted, parachuted, and rocketed toward the surface of Mars. A DPA 4006 microphone on the rover has also provided the first audio recording of sounds from Mars.
From the moment of parachute inflation, the camera system covers the entirety of the descent process, showing some of the rover’s intense ride to Mars’ Jezero Crater. The footage from high definition cameras aboard the spacecraft starts seven miles above the surface, showing the supersonic deployment of the most massive parachute ever sent to another world, and ends with the rover’s touchdown in the crater.
A microphone attached to the rover did not collect usable data during the descent, but the commercial off-the-shelf device survived the highly dynamic descent to the surface and obtained sounds from Jezero Crater on February 20. About 10 seconds into the 60-second recording, a Martian breeze is audible for a few seconds, as are mechanical sounds of the rover operating on the surface.
Head over to nasa.gov to read the full story.