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NASA Mars helicopter spots gear that helped Land Rover persevere

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26 . flight maneuvers

Ingenuity’s 159-second flight began at 11:37 a.m. Mars local time on April 19, the one-year anniversary of its launch. First flight. Flying 26 feet (8 m) above ground level, the creation traveled 630 feet (192 m) to the southeast and took its first photograph. The helicopter then headed southwest and then northwest, taking pictures at pre-planned locations along the way. Once it had collected 10 images in its flash memory, Ingenuity headed west 75m and landed. Total mileage: 1181 feet (360 meters). With Flight 26 completed, the helicopter clocked more than 49 minutes aloft and traveled 3.9 miles (6.2 kilometers).

“To get the shots we needed, Ingenuity did a lot of maneuvers, but we were confident there were complex maneuvers on flights 10, 12 and 13,” said Havard Gribb, Ingenuity’s chief pilot at JPL. “Our landing point has prepared us well to photograph the area of ​​interest for the Perseverance Science team on Flight 27, near the Sittah mountain range.”

The New area of ​​operations The dry delta of the Jezero Crater marks a dramatic departure from the modest, relatively flat terrain that Ingenuity has been flying over since its first voyage. Several miles away, a fan-shaped delta formed as an ancient river spilled into the lake that once filled Jezero Crater. More than 130 feet (40 meters) above the crater and dotted with jagged cliffs, angular surfaces, prominent boulders, and sand-filled pockets, the delta promises many geological discoveries — and perhaps even evidence of microscopic life on Mars billions of years ago.

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Upon reaching the delta, Ingenuity’s first commands may be to help determine which of the two dry river channels he must climb persevere to reach the top of the delta. Besides helping with route planning, the data provided by the helicopter will help the Perseverance team assess potential science targets. The ingenuity may be called upon to photograph geological features so far away that the rover will reach or to explore landing areas and locations on the surface where sample caches may be deposited for Mars sample return a program.

More about creativity

The Ingenuity Mars helicopter was built by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), which is also managing the project for NASA Headquarters. It is supported by NASA’s Science Mission Directorate. NASA’s Ames Research Center in California’s Silicon Valley and NASA’s Langley Research Center in Hampton, Virginia provided critical flight performance analysis and technical assistance during the development of Ingenuity. AeroVironment Inc. Qualcomm and SolAero also assist with the design and key vehicle components. Designed and manufactured by Lockheed Space Mars helicopter delivery system.

At NASA Headquarters, Dave Lavery is the Executive Director of the Ingenuity Mars Helicopter Program.

More about perseverance

The main objective of the mission Persevere on Mars is astrobiologyIncluding searching for signs of ancient microbial life. The rover will characterize the planet’s geology and past climate, and pave the way for human exploration of the Red Planet, and will be the first mission to collect and cache the Martian rocks and regolith (fractured rock and dust).

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Subsequent NASA missions, in cooperation with the European Space Agency (ESA), will send spacecraft to Mars to collect these sealed samples from the surface and return them to Earth for deep analysis.

The Mars 2020 Perseverance mission is part of NASA’s lunar-to-Mars exploration approach, which includes Artemis Missions to the moon will help prepare for human exploration of the red planet.

The Jet Propulsion Laboratory, operated by the NASA-administered California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, California, built and operated the rover’s operations.

For more information on creativity:

mars.nasa.gov/technology/helicopter