NASA just showed us why its Mars lander will soon run out of power

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After detecting over 1,300 Martian quakes, NASA's InSight lander will soon run out of power. A thick layer of red dust has coated the landmark robot's solar panels, depriving the geologic sleuth of the power it needs to continue investigating Mars' interior. The space agency expects to shut down InSight's science mission, notably the use of its temblor-detecting seismometer, over the summer. By year's end, InSight's successful, nearly four-year mission will likely end. "InSight is probably coming to the end of its scientific life pretty soon," Bruce Banerdt, InSight's principal investigator at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, said at a press briefing on May 17. A GIF NASA shared this week gives a vivid look at why InSight's power is diminishing.

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