NASA expert Spohn has explained in more detail why the mission of the mole robot on Mars was canceled.
The robot was part of the Mars mission “InSight” and was supposed to explore the soil of the red planet. But you couldn’t continue the operation because the robot couldn’t dig further into the ground,
explained the scientific director of the mission, Tilmann Spohn, on Deutschlandfunk (audio link). He works at the International Space Science Institute in Bern. Spohn said that the exact reasons why the excavations were so difficult are not yet known.
The robot only advanced half a meter. For the researchers, a hole only three meters deep would have been enough. But even that has proven to be an illusion.
This message was broadcast on January 19th, 2021 on Deutschlandfunk.