We have seen images from various Mars rovers and landers of dust devils on the red planet. Thanks to a microphone on the Perseverance rover, we now know what a dust devil on Mars would sound like.

Perseverance has a microphone on it. Scientists can get clues about the composition of the rock by listening to the 888-565- blasts. One use of the microphone was to hear the sounds of Mars.

The microphone allows us to sample almost 100,000 times a second. We can get a better idea of what Mars is like.

This video shows the original images taken of the direct dust devil encounter by the the rover’s Navigation Camera (Navcam) and the images that have been processed to show the quantity of dust.The sound has been prepared for public release by R. Lapeyre (CNES). Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/LANL/CNES/CNRS/INTA-CSIC/Space Science Institute/ISAE-SUPAERO. The original video from NASA can be found here.

The Perseverance rover seems to see dust devils several times a day. A paper from earlier this year detailed the first 216 days of Perseverance's mission in Jezero Crater and reported how the newest rover on Mars appears to be located in a "dust storm track". Dust and wind activity are high in Jezero Crater. The microphone was on for the first time when the dust devil passed.

The microphone is not always on. It records for about 3 minutes a day. The microphone was turned back on September 27th, 2021. The audio has about 10 seconds of wind and a lot of dust hitting the rover.

These are images taken of the direct dust devil encounter by the the rover’s Navigation Camera (Navcam). The images have been processed to show the quantity of dust. The colour scale ranges from lowest dust content (blue) to highest dust content (yellow).    Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute/ISAE-SUPAERO

Naomi Murdoch, a planetary scientist, and a team of researchers published their findings in Nature Communications. The dust devil encounter was simultaneously imaged by the Perseverance rover's navigation camera and observed by several sensors in the Mars Environmental Dynamics Analyzer.

The dust devil passed directly over the rover at an average speed of 5 meters per second.

The sound recording of the dust devil helps scientists understand the atmosphere and weather on Mars.

In a few seconds, everything happened.

This figure shows the relative size of the dust devil with respect to the Perseverance rover. The dust devil diameter (white circles), determined from combined data and modelling, is 25 m.  The blue dashed arrow shows the dust devil trajectory direction. The rover Navigation camera (Navcam) field of view is indicated by the pale triangle. At t1 Perseverance is in the leading vortex wall, at t2 Perseverance is inside the eye of the vortex, and at t3 Perseverance is in the tailing vortex wall. The vortex and the rover are drawn to scale. The orange arrows indicate the clockwise rotational direction of the vortex winds. Credit: N. Murdoch / ISAE-SUPAERO

Weins said that the wind is about 25 miles per hour. The difference is that the air pressure on Mars is so low that the winds are just as fast as on Earth. It is not a strong wind but it is enough to cause a dust devil.

The team doesn't have to worry about dust collecting on any solar panels since Perseverance is nuclear-powered. It looks like there is more dust in the air.

The Mars InSight mission will be shut down due to dust on the solar panels. There have been reports of wind and dust devils in the Elysium Planitia.

There is different weather on Mars. A concrete sense of what it would be like to be on Mars can be obtained using all of our instruments and tools.