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Our next mission to Mars – the InSight lander – extended the solar arrays that will power the spacecraft once it lands on the Red Planet this November during a test to confirm the solar cells were collecting power. The fan-like solar panels are specially designed for Mars' weak sunlight, caused by the planet's distance from the Sun and its dusty, thin atmosphere. InSight (Interior Exploration using Seismic Investigations, Geodesy and Heat Transport) is a terrestrial planet explorer that will study the Red Planet’s deep interior. This mission will also address one of the most fundamental issues of planetary and solar system science: understanding the processes that shaped the rocky planets of the inner solar system – including Earth – more than four billion years ago. Credit: NASA
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