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NASA’s Ingenuity Mars Helicopters Could Change Space Exploration Forever

Intelligence will fly on Mars in NASA animation.

NASA / JPL-Caltech

NASA’s wheeled probe has revealed an incredible amount of numbers about Mars from Learn about the long history of the planet. And the discovery of soil chemistry for The presence of methane numbing gas in the atmosphere. The rolling robot is indispensable to portray one of the world’s most intimate neighbors. They are unique But it doesn’t cover the ground as much, slow motion is essential in preventing them from falling off a cliff or bumping into a rock.

But imagine if they could fly

Tying wings to robots on other planets opens up new ways to explore other worlds. “The ability to fly wherever you want at high speed for close-up viewing without the risk of damage from collisions or falling into an exciting capability,” said Alan Duffy, professor of astrophysics at the University of California. Said Winburn in Australia.

That’s exactly what NASA did with Ingenuity, a tiny, lightweight motor vehicle scheduled to fly on Mars on April 11.If it could fly, it would be the first time humans have successfully powered and controlled flight on a planet. Other Horoscopes – The Wright Brothers In other parts of the universe

However, there are significant challenges in flying on Mars, and the wit has to fight a particularly planets that like killing spaceships. If successful in getting off the ground, it paves the way for a future mission deep in the universe.

This is why Ingenuity is so ingenious.

Fire Pre-Inspection

If you’re wondering how NASA got a helicopter to Mars and it feels like you’ve never heard a lot about it, it might be NASA’s Perseverance rover stole all its available data. Intelligence is the mission “Ride along the way” and technology demonstration It is not on Mars to conduct science. But it was created to show that propulsion flight was possible on other worlds.

Intelligence is hidden in the belly of perseverance during the rover’s long-distance journey from Earth to Mars, which begins in July. Land Rover Landing on the earth in FebruaryAnd intelligence, safety, and noise from the Martian surface that was intense and cold until April 4, when Diligence leaves the minors carefully. Landed

While on the boat, persistence, ingenuity were guarded and driven by the rover’s tool kit. But after it was cast and the persistence was gone, the wit was cold and lonely – quite literally. Mars’ temperatures dipped below freezing at night to about minus 130 degrees Fahrenheit. Fortunately, intelligence shows that it can handle the cold. Survived the first night being separated from the rover..

The relationship with perseverance has not yet ended. When intelligence first takes off, it will be persistence that conveys those messages back to Earth.

On April 6, Ingenuity photographed Mars for the first time. Low-resolution orange and brown texture snapshotsIt’s not much, but if you want to get technical, it’s a vehicle first. Capable Of the flight captured the surface of the red planet, which is quite cool.

The cabin door is now closed.

There are many challenges flying on Mars. But the main thing is the weather.

There is a stark contrast in the atmosphere between the red planet and Earth. Mars’ atmosphere is incredibly thin compared to our own, so elevating it is much more difficult. Intelligence is designed to deal with this problem. As we call it everything from chopper to helicopter pilots to rotorcraft, the technology that reminds me the most is drones.

Its blades, however, are larger than that of a similarly sized spacecraft on Earth and spinning at about 2,400 rpm, six times faster than a spacecraft on Earth. At this speed and magnitude, terrestrial tests have demonstrated the ability to land on Mars without any problems.

Although unlike drones in that no one is driving a vehicle in real time, the Ingenuity team has to upload the instructions to the craft in advance and then get the information back after the flight. Intelligence was designed to be extremely independent and to keep itself healthy during the time lag between the two planets.

Get ready for takeoff

Before Perseverance landed in Jezero Crater on February 18, the Ingenuity team was looking for the surrounding “airfield” and “airfield”, a flat, mostly empty area on the Martian surface that would not be dangerous. To the safety of intelligence

Fortunately, there is a door next door from the landing point. “We started to realize that we could have a really great airport right in front of our nose,” said NASA’s HåvardFjær Grip, NASA’s chief pilot for Ingenuity. “Every rock and pebble” before deciding on a base for the helicopter.

Within 30 Seoul (approximately 31 Earth days), Ingenuity plans to operate five flights. But first and foremost It’s going to be a pretty simple flight.

The rotorcraft flies straight up to an altitude of about three meters (about 10 feet) and floats in position for about 30 seconds, then makes a slight turn before descending and landing again. During flight, Ingenuity’s eyes and brain work overtime, with the team pre-programmed to keep the craft safe.

It takes 30 images of the ground per second to understand where it is and makes the necessary trajectory changes – about 500 times per second, according to Grip.This independence ensures that intelligence isn’t blown off the track either. Mars gusts of wind

Future mission

As NASA engineers have repeatedly said: ingenuity is A “demonstration of technology” is the same as the first Sojourner Mars rover to fly around the world in 1997.

In many ways, intelligence has succeeded: it survived its expedition to Mars, settled on Earth and survived the first night alone in the cold. The first flight will be important, not just for the exploration of Mars. But for exploring our entire solar system

“If intelligence proves that we can successfully pilot planes on other planets, it will vastly expand exploration options in the future,” said Jonti Horner, a professor of astrophysics at the University of Southern Queensland.

Flight is a powerful tool for taking surveys. If the robots can stay in the air, they will be able to quickly ascend mountain areas to check for cracks in hills, fly over lakes or lakes, and move quickly to avoid danger. With the right equipment, they might as well be able to take the sample and take it back to the rolling robot. You can also imagine a future Mars rover-rotorcraft combo, which allows space agencies to spy on the landing position more accurately and decide the best place to spin in the day. Next day

There are other missions – and the world – that could benefit from Ingenuity’s demonstrations.

Dragonflies will explore Saturn’s moon Titan.


One such mission is NASA’s dragonflyHorner calls Ingenuity his “sister.” The mission will visit Titan, one of the Saturn’s most interesting moonsThe Moon is rich in organic matter, has a nitrogen-rich atmosphere like Earth and is home to Large methane lake And the storm may contain traces of past or present life.

“Titan is unlike any other in the solar system and Dragonfly is unlike any other mission,” said Thomas Zurbuchen, NASA’s assistant curator for the Science Mission Committee. It’s slightly more ambitious than Ingenuity, with a spacecraft equipped with all the necessary tools to find signs of life and to study the Selk crater, suspected of holding water on it. Dragonfly is scheduled for launch in 2027 and will reach. Titan by 2034

If intelligence vanishes from the ground, the dream of flying in another world will become a reality, which is ushering in the next era of planetary space exploration.

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