Mars has long been a great mystery in our universe. Forever, it’s captured the imagination of science fiction and space junkies alike. And of course, from an astronomical perspective, it’s represented something like a great beacon of hope as we begin to venture out into the universe. While the movies might make it seem like space travel is as simple as hopping into warp speed and heading out into the galaxy, we know even getting one planet over is a borderline herculean task. That’s why getting out first real listen to audio recordings of what’s happening on Mars is such a cool thing. We are sprinting towards the future now folks.
Now, in a science fiction movie, when the Mars rover lands on the planet and we get our first listen to the surroundings, what ultimately happens next is something unexpected and terrifying. That’s just the nature of Martians and how we’ve long envisioned the red planet. But, of course, that’s not the case. The reality is much tamer if no less exciting. On Monday, the Mars Perseverance Rover gave us our first listen to the sounds of the planet. Here, check it out:
Some of the background noise we hear on the audio recording, provided by a NASA microphone on the exterior of the Mars rover, is just the actual equipment itself. But at the ten-second mark, you do hear a wind gust blow across the microphone. According to engineers, this is actually the first-ever recorded sound coming from the planet. And in the second clip, we get the rover noise backed out to just hear the sound of the planet.
The Perseverance was launched back in July and landed on Mars last week on February 18th. It was a groundbreaking moment and is one of the most advanced tools yet in exploring the planet. The goal of the Perseverance which includes 19 cameras, multiple microphones, and even a helicopter detachment is to explore the planet. It’s looking for information about the history along with possible areas that have been able to sustain life of some sort. It’s easily the most in-depth humans will have explored Mars to date.
Over the weekend, NASA not only released these new audio sounds of Mars, but also the full landing of the Perseverance in its original descent. It’s an awesome moment as it drifts down onto the red planet. You can three minutes of it here including the final touch down:
This will begin what should be an exciting few months in learning about Mars. The Perseverance will continue to explore the planet, sending back a steady stream of video and audio that will give us a closer look at the planet than ever before. It will also be testing for oxygen levels, microbes, and even soil samples. Will it find the aforementioned alien life? Well, from the movies that usually comes out of nowhere in swift and terrifying fashion. So stay tuned.