The rotation of Mars seems to accelerating, according to a study that used data from NASA’s InSight lander.
Scientists have made the most precise measurement ever of Mars’ rotation and have for the first time detected how the planet “wobbles” as its molten core “sloshes around.” They also found that the planet’s rotation is accelerating.
The findings were made using data from NASA’s InSight lander, which spent four years on the Martian surface before running out of power in December 2022.
The authors of a study published in the journal Nature studied data from the lander’s Rotation and Interior Structure Experiment. (RISE) Using this data, they found that the planet’s rotation is getting faster by about 4 milliarcseconds a year. The acceleration is quite subtle and scientists are not really sure about what is causing it.