NASA Mars helicopter ‘Ingenuity’ fails to take flight throughout fourth run, rescheduled to Friday

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​​NASA’s Perseverance Mars rover took a selfie with the Ingenuity helicopter, seen here about 13 feet from the rover. This image was taken by the WASTON camera on the rover’s robotic arm on April 6, 2021, the 46th Martian day, or sol, of the mission.


NASA’s helicopter on Mars, the four-pound “Ingenuity,” did not get off the bottom for its fourth flight Thursday, however NASA mentioned it’s secure and can attempt once more Friday. 

Earlier take a look at flights for the helicopter went nicely, with Ingenuity rising up 16 ft within the air in the course of the third flight final Sunday then flashing downrange about 50 yards at a velocity of 6.6 ft per second. 

The second take a look at flight on April 22 and the primary flight on April 19 additionally went as deliberate. 

The reason for Thursday’s hiccup was a “watchdog” timer difficulty that prevented Ingenuity from transitioning to “flight mode.” 

INGENUITY MARS HELICOPTER CAPTURES PERSEVERANCE ROVER IN UNPRECEDENTED AERIAL SHOT

Flying on Mars is not any straightforward activity, because the environment is extremely skinny, about 1% that of Earth’s. Nighttime temperatures on the Crimson Planet also can drop as little as minus 130 levels, probably freezing any unprotected electrical programs. 

“Mars is tough,” MiMi Aung, mission supervisor for Ingenuity Mars Helicopter, mentioned earlier than the take a look at flights. “Our plan is to work regardless of the Crimson Planet throws at us the exact same method we dealt with each problem we’ve confronted over the previous six years – collectively, with tenacity and quite a lot of arduous work, and a bit of Ingenuity.”

Ingenuity initially touched down at an historic river delta on Mars in mid-February aboard Perseverance earlier than popping out of the rover’s stomach on April three. 

​​NASA’s Perseverance Mars rover took a selfie with the Ingenuity helicopter, seen here about 13 feet from the rover. This image was taken by the WASTON camera on the rover’s robotic arm on April 6, 2021, the 46th Martian day, or sol, of the mission.

​​NASA’s Perseverance Mars rover took a selfie with the Ingenuity helicopter, seen right here about 13 ft from the rover. This picture was taken by the WASTON digital camera on the rover’s robotic arm on April 6, 2021, the 46th Martian day, or sol, of the mission.
(NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS)

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As soon as Ingenuity’s take a look at flights are accomplished, the Perseverance rover will set off in the hunt for previous microscopic life.

Ingenuity was constructed at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in California and is carrying some wing material from the Wright Flyer that made the primary ever flight on earth at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina in 1903.

The Related Press contributed to this report. 



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