NASA's Mars helicopter, called Ingenuity, completes its historic mission

NASA's Mars helicopter, called Ingenuity, completes its historic mission

One of its blades was damaged during its 72nd and final flight. The small device “opens the way for future travel in our solar system,” asserts NASA, which specifies that its longevity is remarkable.

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NASA's Ingenuity small helicopter is photographed on July 25, 2021. (NASA/JPL/CALTECH)

His name was Versatility. On Thursday, January 25, NASA announced the end of its small helicopter's mission on Mars, after at least one of its rotor blades was damaged during its 72nd and final flight. “What Ingenuity has accomplished is far beyond what we thought possible.”The head of NASA confirmed in a video. Bill Nelson believes that the helicopter “Paved the way for future flights in our solar system.”.

In 2021, Ingenuity became the first robot to fly on another planet. During its 72nd flight, the helicopter reached an altitude of 12 meters, but communication was suddenly lost shortly before landing. They were eventually able to recover it, but NASA teams were able to notice damage to the rotor blade a few days later. “We are examining the possibility that the blade hit the ground.”said Bill Nelson.

The helicopter now “He can no longer fly”NASA confirmed that the causes of the communications outages are still being studied. Ingenuity was originally scheduled to take off only five times. In total, the helicopter covered about 17 kilometers and flew at an altitude of 24 metres. He arrived on Mars with the Perseverance rover, whose mission is to find traces of ancient microbial life on Mars. Its longevity is impressive, especially considering that it had to survive the frigid Martian nights and keep itself warm thanks to solar panels that charged its batteries during the day.

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