Seismology Mission

Seismology mission to Mars

New NASA Mission to Take First Look Deep Inside Mars

The new mission, named InSight, will place instruments on the Martian surface to investigate whether the core of Mars is solid or liquid like Earth's, and why Mars' crust is not divided into tectonic plates that drift like Earth's. Detailed knowledge of the interior of Mars in comparison to Earth will help scientists understand better how terrestrial planets form and evolve.

InSight will carry four instruments. JPL will provide an onboard geodetic instrument to determine the planet's rotation axis and a robotic arm and two cameras used to deploy and monitor instruments on the Martian surface. CNES is leading an international consortium that is building an instrument to measure seismic waves traveling through the planet's interior. The German Aerospace Center is building a subsurface heat probe to measure the flow of heat from the interior.



Looking at Earth's seismicity in the Southern hemisphere(nearly non-existent), and seeing the near absence of lighter(hotter) elevated land masses there, gives the impression that Earth is quiescent and stable in the South sector.
We see on Mars the far thicker elevated Southern hemisphere and we cannot imagine the South being active and in motion. Can the deep Southern hemisphere be a source of Marsquakes if the crust is more elevated, and either cooler or more active in formation at depth?


Observing the Martian Northern hemisphere we see most of the well ordered and previously active geology landforms mixed with a predominance of lower elevation water influenced basaltic fill which has accommodated the elevation lows with infilling to a remarkable surface level of notable spherical flatness.

The contradictions give an expectation that Marsquakes should have been active in the North in Early Mars, and that they should have been concentrated in the North.

The Earth based GRACE gravity satellite shows that areas of severe gravitation imbalance(differentials) are concentrated in a fluid field along patterned general shapes when averaged monthly. Much change occurs in the details of the patterns but recurring simple shapes are present and recurring in periods of months and years.
Some unusual shapes of strong differential occur only in a few years or greater separation of timing, and they match distinguished land-form features we consider essential to plate tectonics and geological standards of change.

Most all 5 and greater Reichter scale quakes occur along the portions of these severe differentials, with few other strong Earthquakes anywhere else on Earth upon years of watching.

To find in Mars a corollary in shapes and patterned geological landmarks, and to find them formerly active in the Northern hemisphere matching that which is now occurring on Earth, gives a basic question as to whether the Mars and Earth of the past were also active almost exclusively in the North, showing a gravity field pattern which would allow for the actions recorded there.

Figure 2 for this article shows the 'Earth-like' gravity field similar structure for Mars returned from early and less sensitive equipment a few years past.
The similarity of the two planets despite reversals of materials, is remarkable and inescapable.
I'll find better graphics support for the concepts.

As the gravity mapping becomes more refined this century we will explain much of the difficulty in larger magnitude Earth and Mars quake prediction limitations. I suspect precise predictions are a centuries effort to real success.
I have as yet to read an explanation for the equatorial offset and pole to pole misalignment of high/low gravity pattern differentials.
We see the Dichotomy zone and the Earth torsion offsets in continental and plate functions from our mapping. We now have a few simple global maps of stresses which form a type of compensation at opposing polar coordinates, north versus south.
Watching the development of new science in gravity concepts is exciting as it has great potential in the future once a detailed system is known.
Mars global gravity field structure estimated from satellite information. An early view.

Earth global gravity system results from the GRACE satellite and other sources. Both these structures are a matched pair effectively. Both show at the equatorial region all around the planets an offset from north to south in simultaneous and even long term averages. This gives a figure for understanding the Earth's geology offsets, and the Mars Dichotomy Zone rifting or similar alterations Lowland to Highlands.
Am I suggesting too much a match in the obvious patterns which match? Is this a 'motor' as active as it appears in the early graphic results? Can the details be less 'real' than they appear?


As the strong Earthquakes happen along the most colorful stress differentiated zones in averaged views of these field structures, will we find residual Marsquakes aligned in the same zones?
Will Mars quakes also occur predominately along the north hemisphere sector, as on current Earth?
So many processes are seen in the new views. What is the science in the topic?
Is the Dichotomy Zone a product of deep tectonics reactions or causes aligned to these new views?

In each anigif the colors show high values as tending to red, and low values as blue. Notice the very regular Earth/Mars match in north/south polar offsets of values all across both planets. There are a couple of locations where the color are not offset on both planets. That is also significant as there are so few zones not switching in coloration, and they are tended to be equatorial on both planets.

Will we find that the presence of earthquakes along these patterns is not matched on Mars by any major Marsquakes?

Dig into the recesses of the new science images. Much is hidden and some is obvious new science in the making.

A research link describing aspects of the MarsGRACE gravity structure efforts.
Additional research giving an estimated interpolated Gale crater gravitation pattern graphic, along with other related views across Mars.
All the results of the InSight mission would aid in resolving details of the basic processes.
The Mars anigif is based upon the GMM2B graphics.