Mars helicopter’s demonstration phase to begin: NASA

NASA plans Mars helicopter’s demonstration phase to begin after 2 weeks. NASA’s Ingenuity has proven that powered, controlled flight is possible on the Red Planet. After the success, NASA has planned a new mission experiment soon to embark on a new operations demonstration phase, exploring how aerial scouting and other functions could benefit future exploration of Mars and other worlds.

Ingenuity has already performed 3 successful test flights the latest being on 25 April. After working out the remaining 2 planned test flights, the new phase will begin.

NASA’s decision to add an operations demonstration is as a result of the Perseverance rover being ahead of schedule with the thorough checkout of all vehicle systems since its Feb 18 landing. Further, its science team has chosen a nearby patch of crater bed for its first detailed explorations. NASA got an opportunity to allow the helicopter to continue exploring its capabilities with an operations demonstration without significantly impacting rover scheduling as the helicopter’s energy, telecommunications, and in-flight navigation systems have been performing beyond expectation,

The operations demonstration will begin in about two weeks with the helicopter’s sixth flight. Until then, Ingenuity will be in a transitional phase that includes its fourth and fifth forays into Mars’ crimson skies. Flight four will send the rotorcraft about 436 feet south to collect aerial imagery of a potential new landing zone before returning to land at Wright Brothers.

Previously, Ingenuity was programmed to execute a fourth flight Friday. According to NASA’s statement, the fifth flight would send Ingenuity on a one-way mission, landing at the new site. If Ingenuity remains healthy after those flights, the Mars helicopter’s demonstration phase can begin.

The Ingenuity Mars Helicopter was built byJPL, which also manages this technology demonstration project for NASA Headquarters.

  • May 1, 2021
Universe & Existence