NASA released an audio recording of the traveler’s 300-foot drive on March 7 at Jezero Crater with an input and landing (EDL) microphone. In the audio recording, the traveler’s wheels can be heard crackling as they move across the surface of the red planet, along with explosions and squeaks made by the mobility system. In this context, perseverance is said to make a lot of noise while navigating the Martian terrain.
The audio consists of original and unfiltered 16-minute recording
According to Vandi Verma, a senior engineer and traveler driver at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory: “A lot of people who see the pictures don’t appreciate the wheels being metal. When driving on the rocks with these wheels, it is actually very noisy.”
Dave Gruel, chief engineer of the EDL system, sees the traveler’s voice as follows: “It’s so loud, if you heard these noises while driving, you’d pull over and call a tow truck,”
The original and unfiltered 16-minute recording includes the traveler’s driving sounds as well as a high-pitched scratching sound. While Perseverance’s engineering team is still trying to figure out where the high-pitched scratching came from, they’ve already identified several possibilities.
As a result of these determinations, the sound of scratching may have been generated by the mobility system. Or it could have been caused by an electromagnetic interference from one of the traveler’s electronic boxes. However, NASA also released a 90-second version that filters out some of the sound.
The Perseverance rover continues to give us the first sounds recorded on Mars. In addition to the driving sound, a microphone that is part of the SuperCam also recorded the sound of the Martian winds.
“We visually feel the differences between Earth and Mars. But the sound is a completely different dimension. Sound allows us to see the differences between Earth and Mars and experience this environment more closely.”