NASA's InSight spacecraft touches down on Mars
A NASA spacecraft tasked with exploring the interior of Mars has touched down on the planet's surface after a dangerous six-minute descent into the red colored atmosphere.
At NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in California, the successful landing was followed by cheers and applaud by the operators of the spacecraft.
The spacecraft made its landing just before 3 p.m. EST (2000GMT), after a six-month journey through space that covered more than 300 million miles (483 million kilometers).
The InSight mission will be to study Mars' interior structure -- its crust, mantle and core. The mission also measures tectonic activity and meteorite impacts on Mars.
"I feel you, #Mars - and soon I’ll know your heart. With this safe landing, I’m here. I’m home," NASA wrote on the InSight mission's Twitter account.
The U.S. has made nine total attempts of landing a spacecraft on the surface of the planet, beginning with the Viking mission in 1976.