NASA has released a video of the 25th flight of the Ingenuity helicopter, showing the longest and fastest flight of this tiny helicopter. On April 18, the NASA Ingenuity Mars drone covered a distance of 704 m at a speed of 5.5 m/s. Currently, the team is already preparing for the 29th flight to Mars.
“For our record-breaking flight, Ingenuity’s downward-pointing navigation camera gave us a breathtaking feeling of what it’s like to hover 10 meters above the surface of Mars at a speed of 20 km/h,” said Teddy Tsanetos, head of the Ingenuity group at NASA.
The video starts about one second after the start of the flight. The helicopter’s downward-pointing black-and-white camera was designed to turn off when the rotorcraft is within a meter of the surface to avoid dust entering the shutter.
As soon as Ingenuity reaches a height of 10 m, the helicopter starts flying to the southwest. The device gains maximum speed after three seconds of flight. How fast the drone flies can be seen by its shadow cast on the deserted surface of the Red Planet. However, the entire flight of 161.3 seconds was shortened to less than 35 seconds due to the video being accelerated 5 times.
On April 19, 2021, Ingenuity became the first powered helicopter to take off from the surface of another planet. The drone, 48 cm high and weighing 1.8 kg, was designed to test a completely new way of exploring alien worlds, and it has already far exceeded all expectations, having made 28 flights over Mars with the planned five. Ingenuity is now acting as a navigator partner for the Perseverance rover to find safer routes for the probe.
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