NASA’s Mars Ingenuity helicopter now makes seven flights over the Red Planet.
4 lbs. (1.8 kg) the helicopter took to the Martian skies again on Sunday (June 6), making its first combat mission after overcoming the in-flight anomaly on May 22. And this time there were no problems.
“From a member of the helicopter crew:“ There are no anomalies in Flight 7, ingenuity is fine! »NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), which manages the Ingenuity mission, wrote via Twitter on Tuesday evening
Video: Get a view of Mars from the fourth Ingenuity helicopter flight.
As planned on Sunday, Ingenuity traveled 348 feet (106 meters) south of its previous location at the bottom of Martian Crater Jezero, remaining airborne for almost 63 seconds, JPL officials wrote. one more tweet… The solar-powered rotorcraft has landed at a new airfield, the fourth it has reached since landing on the Red Planet with NASA’s Perseverance rover on February 18.
Ingenuity emerged from the belly of Perseverance on April 3. This milestone marked the beginning of a 30-day helicopter flight campaign that was designed to show that powered flight is possible in the thin air of the Red Planet.
Ingenuity flew five flights during this technology demonstration campaign and then embarked on an expanded mission to demonstrate the reconnaissance potential of Martian rotorcraft.
Like me, #MarsHelicopter is heading south. You can track both of our locations on this map: https://t.co/uPsKFhW17J https://t.co/UcUH8jacPrJune 9, 2021
The first flight of this extended phase, departure on May 22, did not go entirely smoothly: Ingenuity had a glitch that briefly interrupted the stream of photos from the navigation camera to the on-board computer. But the helicopter overcame the problem, managing to land safely near its intended destination. And there were no major problems judging by the success of Sunday.
Perseverance recorded video and sometimes audio of Ingenuity’s first five flights. But then the rover the size of a car turned away from the documentary role to focus on its scientific mission, which is devoted to finding signs of ancient Martian life and collecting samples for future return to Earth.
Mike Wall is the author of “There“(Grand Central Publishing, 2018; illustrated by Carl Tate), a book on the quest for alien life. Follow it on Twitter @michaeldwall. Follow us on Twitter @Spacedotcom or Facebook.