Undoubtedly, the space InSight mission carried out by NASA to Mars has been one of the most data-rich missions on the red planet, especially with its first detection of an earthquake.
But now, the probe surprised us with new images of what sunrise and sunset look like from that planet, as recently announced by the US space agency.
Just a blissful day on #Mars as feathery clouds roll by me and the Sun shines on the horizon.
— NASA InSight (@NASAInSight) May 1, 2019
According to NASA, the landing module used the camera on its robotic arm to take photos on April 24 and 25, capturing the sunrise at the equivalent of 5:30 am and 6:30 pm local time.
In the images, the Sun looks very small because it is farther from Mars than Earth. That means the star appears to be about two-thirds the size that we actually see it from our planet.
— NASA Marshall (@NASA_Marshall) May 1, 2019
Justin Maki, a researcher at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, said in a statement that this is not the first time they have been able to capture images of sunrise and sunset on Mars.
The first mission to make similar photographs was the ship Viking 1, which captured a sunset, on August 21, 1976. The second was the twin probe, Viking 2, which took the dawn of June 14, 1978.
The InSight probe will spend two years on Mars learning everything it can about the deep interior of the red planet, but at the same time providing us with interesting details like these.