All is not lost, however, since the Mole’s failure has helped engineers develop different strategies for future missions. In addition, now that the InSight arm has been used in this manner, the probe will bury its seismometer to help it get cleaner, more accurate readings of the martian geology. And InSight’s mission isn’t over — its expected lifespan has been extended until at least the end of 2022.
InSight will be tasked with determining if the Martian core is liquid or solid, examining weather data and, when the Perseverance lands, building the first meteorological network humans have built on another planet. Just don’t ask it to help you put up a shelf.