The Mars Microphone for Mars 2020 is a very simple and exciting experiment, whose primary objective is to achieve a world premiere : retrieve sounds from Mars, in particular the sound generated by its "mother" payload, the SuperCam LIBS laser. In addition to this primary objective, it will contribute to basic atmospheric investigation by analysis of the acoustic environment and help put constraints on wind vortex or dust devils properties.
Secondary objectives will strongly depend on favourable circumstances. The microphone may be able to retrieve Martian atmosphere electrical activity related sounds and possibly retrieve the sound of bolides entry.
The mass of this experiment is about 50g, and its consumption 150 mW. Depending on the operational scenario, the energy need may be very small.
While built in Europe, with students involvement, the Mars Microphone will also strongly rely on the heritage of the previous Mars Microphone experiments, led by Berkeley SSL and the Planetary Society for the Phoenix, Mars Polar lander and NetLander missions. This experiment will therefore feature a unique combination of outreach, educational initiative and scientific objectives, .