In November 2018, NASA’s Insight Lander landed safely on Mars. So far, the most sensitive seismometer has been attached to the same lander. It has recorded numerous minor motions on Mars since landing. The past two shocks, however, are noteworthy, according to experts connected with the Insight expedition.
“Not only are they by far the largest and farthest events, [the event dubbed] S1000a has a spectrum and duration unlike any other previously observed event,” lead author Anna Horleston, a seismologist at the University of Bristol in the United Kingdom, said in a statement released by the Seismological Society of America, which published the new research. “In the Martian seismic record, they are extremely extraordinary events.”
The last two large earthquakes have also been given distinct names by scientists. S0976 was the designation of the first earthquake, which occurred on August 25, 2021. On the Richter scale, the epicenter was rated at 4.2, with the epicenter located below ground.
The S1000A earthquake was the longest earthquake ever recorded on Mars, lasting 94 minutes. The Insight Lander’s seismometer was unable to quantify the pressure emitted by the previous two earthquakes on Mars because it could not distinguish between the ‘P’ and ‘S’ waves. The pressure lessens as the wave passes through the planet’s navel (core) from the opposite side.
2 giant marsquakes rock the far side of the Red Planet https://t.co/0ah2YWi09F— Live Science (@LiveScience) April 27, 2022