October 08, 2019 1 min read

An instrument on NASA's InSight lander has been stuck in the Martian soil for months, but engineers have come up with a new plan to try to save the device.

The InSight lander's self-hammering heat probe, also known as "the mole," has been stuck in place since Feb. 28. It was supposed to burrow 16 feet (5 meters) into the ground, but it stalled way short, at 14 inches (35 centimeters).

To be fair to the mole, it's digging into unknown territory. Nothing has ever dug that deep in Martian soil before, so it's hard to predict what the regolith is made of. NASA and the German space agency, which made the mole and the Heat Flow and Physical Properties Package (HP3) of which it is a part, have been working together since June on alternative fixes.

Read more here:  Space.com


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