The scientists will also use the lander's communications equipment to measure the wobble of Mars' axial tilt - information that will shed light on the size and nature of the planet's core.
InSight will fly through the Martian air at 12,300 miles per hour and must make initial contact with the atmosphere at an angle of precisely 12 degrees.
Coverage on the NASA website begins at 11:00 am (1900 GMT).
An artist's depiction of InSight - short for Interior Exploration using Seismic Investigations, Geodesy and Heat Transport.
If you're in New York City, the historic NASA InSight Lander landing will be broadcast on the Nasdaq screen in Times Square.
Meanwhile, the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter will record the entry, descent, and landing of InSight in real time, but because of planetary dynamics, that spacecraft won't relay that information back to Earth for about three hours. That will be left to future rovers, such as NASA's Mars 2020 mission, which will collect rocks that will eventually be brought back to Earth and analyzed for evidence of ancient life. "We've spent years testing our plans, learning from other Mars landings and studying all the conditions Mars can throw at us", said Rob Grover, InSight's entry, descent and landing (EDL) lead, based at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, in a recent statement.
"My imagination has always really been challenged by Mars because we keep on running into things that are crazier than I ever imagined", Bruce Banerdt, principle investigator of the InSight mission, said yesterday during a NASA press conference. The probe will first touch the atmosphere six minutes and 45 seconds before landing.
The JPL controllers also expect to receive a photograph of the probe's new surroundings on the flat, smooth Martian plain close to the planet's equator called the Elysium Planitia.
The InSight lander aimed for an afternoon touchdown, as anxiety built among those involved in the $1 billion worldwide effort.
InSight will land on Mars at approximately 3 P.M. EST.
About the size of a dinner table with two solar panels attached, the InSight lander is created to take Mars's pulse and temperature. They are experimental, however, and NASA is not counting on this data. France and Germany have contributed about $180m for SEIS and HP³ respectively. The probe will detect how much heat energy is flowing out of the planet, and where the heat is coming from, expanding our knowledge of how the planet formed and evolved.
InSight's 1.8m robotic arm will be used to place the instruments on the Martian surface, where they will be calibrated. In 2012, there were similar events to celebrate the Mars Curiosity rover's landing.
"I liken it to playing that claw game at a fairground, but with a very very valuable prize. and you're doing blindfolded and remotely from 300 million miles away", Barret said. Its mission is to study the interior of the planet. Everything - from the angle at which the probe first hits the martian atmosphere, to the exact time its three legs pop free, ready to absorb the shock of landing - must go right - and in the right order.
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