Mission to hear winds of Mars
Monday 04 January 1999
The Nasa mission is expected to reveal new information about the planet's composition, the presence of water and even what noises can be heard on its surface.
The unmanned craft, named the Mars Polar Lander, was due to lift off last night on the back of a Delta 2 rocket. But there was concern that the launch would be delayed because of a rough weather.
Nasa has 25 days to send the probe on its way, to take advantage of a beneficial alignment of the Earth and Mars. Last month the agency successfully launched the Mars Climate Orbiter, which is designed to circle Mars and scan its surface from a height of 262 miles.
The Lander is scheduled to reach Mars in December after a journey of 416 million miles and touch down close to the planet's permanent ice cap at the southern pole. The craft is equipped with a mechanical arm to scoop up soil and a camera to survey the landing area.
A microphone will allow Nasa scientists for the first time to listen in to wind sounds or any other noises audible on the planet.
- 1 The difference between a migrant and refugee, in one sentence
- 2 Miley Cyrus calls out hypocrisy of women’s nipples being taboo
- 3 Celebrity Big Brother 2015: Tila Tequila kicked off show after 'describing Hitler as a good man'
- 4 Watch the Supermoon live: How to see the brightest Moon of the year tonight
- 5 iPhone 5c to be discontinued, no iPhone 6c to replace it
Spain accused of 'provocation' after letting Russian submarine refuel off Gibraltar
The difference between a migrant and refugee, in one sentence
Allonautilus scrobiculatus: World's 'rarest' creature spotted for only the third time ever
Miley Cyrus calls out hypocrisy of women’s nipples being taboo
Bangkok Bomb: Thai police name Adem Karadag as suspect arrested over blast that killed 20
Climate change: 2015 will be the hottest year on record 'by a mile', experts say
'Women only' train carriages: Jeremy Corbyn unveils radical move to tackle public harassment
Black holes are a passage to another universe, says Stephen Hawking
Iain Duncan Smith 'should resign over disability benefit death figures', says Jeremy Corbyn
Stock up on canned food for stock market crash, warns former Gordon Brown adviser
Labour leadership: Jeremy Corbyn voters most likely to believe 'world is controlled by a secretive elite'
£18000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Sales Executive or Senior Sal...
£40000 - £55000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...
£22000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This industry leading company produces h...
£20000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This IT provider for the educat...