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NASA’s Mars Helicopter Ingenuity is ‘go’ for historic first flight

NASA’s Mars Helicopter Ingenuity is ‘go’ for historic first flight

Recently NASA announced that its Ingenuity helicopter has been successfully launched on the surface of Mars, making it the first rotorcraft to land on a planet other than Earth.

According to NASA, the Ingenuity Mars helicopter will make its first flight to Mars on April 14, with the Ingenuity becoming the first controlled aircraft in the world to fly to another planet.

Rotorcraft on Mars

  • The need for rotorcraft on Mars is because the surface there is extremely bumpy, where neither the orbiters are capable nor the rover is capable. In such a situation, rotorcraft is needed, which can fly to difficult places and take high-definition pictures.For this reason, NASA has sent a rotorcraft called Ingenuity to Mars for complete study of the planet.
  • According to NASA, if the Ingenuity helicopter was able to fly and travel some distance, the mission would be 90%
  • NASA’s first Mars helicopter is named Ingenuity. The name was given by 17-year-old Indian-origin student VenijaRupani.
  • Rupani participated in the ‘Name the Rover’ competition organized by NASA where the name given by her was chosen.

Ingenuity Helicopter

  • It is the first aircraft on Mars and is intended to make the first powered and fully controlled atmospheric flight, from takeoff to landing, on any planet beyond Earth.
  • On Mars, temperatures drop to 130 degrees Fahrenheit at night, so the main challenge of the Ingenuity helicopter is whether or not it will continue to operate at such low temperatures because such temperatures can freeze and crack the craft’s batteries.
  • It is a solar powered helicopter, and has a speed of 2,400 The weight of this helicopter is 8 kg.
  • As part of the Mars mission – 2020, the Ingenuity helicopter was launched on the surface of Mars by Perseverance Rover.

Perseverance Rover

  • Perseverance Rover is a mission to Mars, which aims to discover signs of ancient microbial life in Mars. Earlier, ‘Curiosity’ rover was sent to Mars.
  • The Perseverance Rover has seven payload instruments, two micro phones and 19 cameras. It will drill Mars soil and collect key samples of rocks of Mars.

Mars missions of other countries:

  • The “Tianwen-1” mission was launched by China.
  • The ‘Hope Orbiter’ mission was launched by the UAE.

Source – The Hindu

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