Over the two years of InSight's primary mission, the experiment will build a picture of how much Mars wobbles as it rotates, using the lander as a fixed point on the planet's surface.
The $1 billion global mission features a German-led mechanical mole that will burrow down 16 feet to measure the planet's internal heat. After its solar arrays successfully deploy, the lander will probe below the planet's surface and measure meteor impacts and other seismic activity to learn about Mars' interior structure.
Congratulations flooded into the space agency following the success, including from Mike Pence, the USA vice president, who celebrated the "incredible milestone" of the country's eighth successful landing on Mars.
InSight robotically guided itself through the landing, outside of a few last minute tweaks by the entry, descent and landing team to the algorithm that guides the lander to the surface. Less than a minute later, InSight's 12 retrorockets fired, providing the probe with an additional braking force, and allowing it to settle neatly onto the planet's surface.
United States space agency Nasa has landed a new robot on Mars after a dramatic seven-minute plunge to the surface of the Red Planet.
The 800-pound (360-kilogram) InSight is stationary and will operate from the same spot for the next two years, the duration of a Martian year.
"Landing on Mars is exciting, but scientists are looking forward to the time after InSight lands", said Glaze.
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InSight will spend 24 months- about one Martian year - using seismic monitoring and underground temperature readings to unlock mysteries about how Mars formed and, by extension, the origins of the Earth and other rocky planets of the inner solar system.
InSight, a almost $1.5 billion NZD worldwide venture, reached the surface after going from 19,800 km/h to zero in six minutes flat, using a parachute and braking engines.
He said it was a little odd to realize that by the time word arrived, history had already been made eight minutes earlier because of the lag in communication between Mars and Earth.
Nasa's mission control in California erupted with delight when it became clear InSight was safe on the ground.
"I'll tell you, it was intense, and you could feel the emotion", Bridenstine told Gay Yee Hill, a spokesperson for JPL, during the landing webcast. NASA's Mars Odyssey will then fly overhead to confirm that the panels are out.
What counts most at the moment though is that InSight is precisely where it's supposed to be-on Mars's Elysium plain, just north of the equator; and that it's there precisely when it was supposed to be-205 days after its May 5 launch.
The MarCO-A cubesat also indirectly performed science during the flyby as its radio signals were occluded by the planet as it passed behind Mars.