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19 February 2021, 12:01
Our solar system isn’t silent, but instead contains a symphony of planetary noises and screeching helium.
Just yesterday, NASA’s latest Mars mission, the Perseverance rover, safely landed on the Red Planet after an almost seven-month journey – and we got a glimpse of the flat, rocky terrain of the Jezero crater.
From looking at the grainy first picture it beamed back to Earth, the barren landscape seems eerily empty and quiet. But that isn’t the case.
NASA has previously captured the unearthly sounds of the solar system, through radio emissions that scientists have converted into sound waves.
Hear the chilling cacophony of plasma waves, the mighty bellow of Jupiter, the gusty howl of Mars’ surface, and every other planet in our solar system, in the video below.
It’s incredible to hear noises from planets that are hundreds of millions of kilometres away from our humble, tiny home.
And I think we can all agree, some of those sounds are downright nightmare fuel.
Take the noises of Saturn, for example, which were described by one YouTube user as the “sounds of the damned”.
And if there’s one planet we don’t want to stumble across the next time we’re stuck in outer space, it’s got to be Venus.
Now, NASA is hoping to capture more recordings from Mars, thanks to the Perseverance rover.
This might also include noises of the rover at work, wind and other ambient sounds picked up from the Red Planet.
But things will sound a tad different on our neighbouring planet than they do on our own.
“The Martian atmosphere is only 1 percent as dense as Earth’s atmosphere at the surface and has a different makeup than ours, which affects sound emission and propagation,” NASA explained.
The spokesperson continued: “But the discrepancy between sounds on Earth and Mars would be much less dramatic than, for example, someone’s voice before and after inhaling helium from a balloon.”
We could hear new sounds as soon this week, with processed versions possibly on the way the week after that.