It's like taken directly from a medieval armor...

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The role of wind and thermal shield (WTS) deployed over the seismometer is in its name - protecting it from noise and thermal changes. This is fairly clear - and achievable by classic means; a rigid protective shell on the outside, possibly a padding on the inside, the "bellow" skirt to align it with the uneven ground... but I just don't see where the chain mail and scale mail skirts come into the picture. Other than being rather heavy (pulling the kapton skirt to the ground) - which could be achieved by other (admittedly less cool looking) means, I don't see their role. Especially that neither was famed for being particularly good against heat, cold or wind.

How do they help in thermal and wind protection?

  • 2
    $\begingroup$ What, no chainmail tag? I'll advocate for that if you advocate for a Gilligan's Island tag. $\endgroup$
    – uhoh
    Feb 11, 2019 at 11:47
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    $\begingroup$ Perhaps to protect against pointy bits on the Martian surface? $\endgroup$ Feb 11, 2019 at 15:50
  • $\begingroup$ Allied with @ChrisB.Behrens comment. It might be a simple way to provide a flexible seal with the ground to minimize gaps between the ground & the protective skirt. $\endgroup$
    – Fred
    Feb 11, 2019 at 16:23
  • $\begingroup$ Chainmail alone would suffice for that. Or even a spongy bottom seal. $\endgroup$
    – SF.
    Feb 11, 2019 at 16:29
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    $\begingroup$ Mars is named after the roman god of war, after all. Better come prepared. $\endgroup$
    – Ingolifs
    Feb 11, 2019 at 22:12

1 Answer 1


"The extendable skirt is bordered around its circumference by a kind of chain-mail, not unlike that worn as armour by medieval knights. Its weight alone allows the skirt to descend. Its platelet structure also confers a second advantage, namely its ability to effectively cover obstacles such as pebbles, enveloping their surfaces and hence sealing off the WTS." -- https://www.seis-insight.eu/en/public-2/seis-instrument/wts


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