CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) – NASA 's new Mars lander has captured the first sounds of the "really unworldly" Martian wind.
The Jet Propulsion Laboratory released audio clips of the alien wind Friday. The low-frequency rumblings were collected by the InSight during the first week of operations at Mars.
The wind is estimated to be blowing 10 mph to 15 mph (16 kph to 24 kph). These are the first sounds from Mars that are detectable by human ears, according to the researchers.
Cornwall University's Don Banfield told reporters.
An otherworldly quality to it. Thomas Pike of Imperial London College said the rumbling is "rather different to anything that we have experienced on Earth, and I think it just gives us another way of thinking about how far away we are getting these signals."
The wind is blowing against the whole spacecraft. The soundtrack is recorded by the air of the spacecraft.
The low frequencies are a result of Mars, and is meant to detect underground seismic waves, well below the threshold of human hearing. The seismometer will be moved to the Martian surface in the coming weeks; until then, the team plans to record more wind noise.
The 1976 Viking landers on Mars picked up at the sound, said InSight's lead scientist, Bruce Banerdt, of JPL in Pasadena, California.
"Really unworldly" sounds from InSight, meanwhile, have Banerdt imaging he's "on a planet that's in some ways like the Earth, but in some ways really alien." InSight landed on Mars on Nov. 26.
"We're all still on a week from the landing last week … and we've been getting some amazing new science," said NASA's Lori Glaze, acting director of planetary science . "It's cool, it's fun."