Scientists record the largest earthquakes on Mars on the Red Planet

Scientists say they have identified the two largest tremors ever recorded on the Red Planet.

swamp is a seismic The event that occurs on the surface of Mars. It is similar to earthquakes that occur on our planet.

The activity was recorded by a device called a seismometer. It is connected to the Insight spacecraft, a spacecraft operated by the US space agency NASA.

The seismometer is designed to be highly sensitive to the Martian environment. It aims to differentiate between seismic signals coming from inside Mars and activity coming from above the surface, such as wind or meteor movements.

One of the earthquakes occurred on August 25, 2021, with a magnitude of 4.2. The other, on September 18, 2021, measures 4.1.

This image provided by NASA on Tuesday, April 23, 2019, shows the wind shield and domed heat shield of the Mars Insight lander that covers the seismometer. (NASA/JPL-Caltech via AP)

An international team led by researchers from the University of Bristol in Britain confirmed the occurrence of seismic activity. The results were recently mentioned In a study in the publication seismic record.

Earthquakes happen when the soil on Mars is subjected to intense pressure that breaks rock structures. explain ETH Zurich. ETH Zurich is a public research university in Zurich, Switzerland. Researchers from the university participated in the latest study.

InSight brought the first seismometer to Mars in late 2018 Record the first earthquake In April 2019. Since then, hundreds of earthquakes have been recorded.

But examinations of the two in the study indicate that they were the largest so far that have not hit Mars. The two compounds were five times more powerful than any two earthquakes recorded before, the researchers said. They were also the first seismic events to occur on the far side of the planet from where the InSight probe is sitting.

The study reports that as of October 2021, InSight’s records contained nearly 1,000 seismic events. It all happened on the side of Mars where the spacecraft is operating, in an area called Elysium Planitia. NASA Says This region is located north of the equator of Mars and is the second largest volcanic region on the planet.

As seismic activity was still being studied, NASA pointed In a statement last September, the 4.2 Mars earthquake appeared to have occurred about 8,500 kilometers from the InSight lander.

Both large complexes occurred in an area known as the “core shadow zone”, She said Statement from the American Seismological Society.

In this undated image made available by NASA on Thursday, July 22, 2021, clouds drift over the dome-covered SEIS seismometer of the InSight lander on Mars.

In this undated image made available by NASA on Thursday, July 22, 2021, clouds drift over the dome-covered SEIS seismometer of the InSight lander on Mars.

This is the part of Mars where some types of seismic waves cannot travel directly to the InSight seismometer. This is because the waves are blocked or affected by the planet Nucleus. Instead the waves getreflected At least once on the surface before traveling to the seismometer,” the association said in a statement.

“Recording events within the core shadow area is real a step “For our understanding of Mars,” said Savas Ceylan, a researcher at ETH Zurich who helped lead the study. He added that the energy transmitted within Mars’ primary shadow had not previously been studied by seismology.

Researchers say this seismic wave data can help them learn more about deeper Layers Inside Mars, as well as the planet’s current seismic activity.

I’m Brian Lynn.

Brian Lane wrote this story for VOA Learning English, based on reports from the American Seismological Society, NASA, and The Seismic Record.

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The words in this story

seismic related to an earthquake or its cause

meteor – n. A piece of rock from outer space fell to the surface of the Earth

Nucleus – n. The central part of a planet

reflect – Fifth. To return or bounce something

a step – n. An event or experience useful to reach the goal

layer – n. One of several quantities of a substance, one above the other

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