They calculate the speed of sound on Mars and talking about it would be a disaster
Elon Musk has again delayed the arrival of humans on mars, more precisely, until 2029. But it is clear that sooner or later there will be people walking on the red planet, so it is worth studying some data about this. For example, what is the Speed of sound the? This question would be a mystery if it were not for the fact that the rover perseverance was sent there in charge of microphones and laser. Thanks to these instruments, it was possible to calculate a figure which has just been presented in the Los Alamos National Laboratory 53rd Lunar and Planetary Science Conference.
Before knowing the exact number, it is important to take into account several things. On the one hand, that on Mars there is no single speed of sound. Not on Earth either, actually. This parameter mainly depends on the temperature and density of the mediumso it was calculated at a specific temperature in the jezero crateror perseverance landed in February 2021.
Additionally, Mars has some unique features in its atmospherethat affect the speed of sound different frequencies. The result is that, as these scientists could see, high-pitched sounds would reach us before low-pitched sounds. Come on, if we could really talk on the red planet, we’d be heard earlier at noon than getting up in the morning. But joking aside, let’s see how they got all this information.
Lucky Instruments of Perseverance
Perseverance was sent to Mars with lasers used to break up rocks around him looking for samples of the Martian surface. In addition, unlike other Mars rovers, it contains microphones. We wonder why we want microphones on the red planet, but the truth is that there is an explanation. Its purpose was to record the sound pressure variations of the rover’s laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy instrument while collecting rock samples. And that’s what he did. However, the combination of these two instruments has enabled something that was not initially planned: to calculate the speed of sound on Mars.