Another incredible first for humanity. Watch as NASA’s Helicopter Ingenuity makes its first ever flight on Mars.
Not long after our first steps on the moon, we have an unmanned flying helicopter drone conducting the first ever controlled flight on another planet. For the first time NASA’s helicopter is flying on the surface of Mars.
Even more amazingly, this moment in history was able to be recorded by the new NASA Mars Rover Perseverance as it sat with a perfect view of the event, and recorded everything from its various cameras.
NASA's Helicopter Flight Harder Than It Appears
Not as simple as it may seem, the NASA’s Helicopter had to be special designed to survive the transit and descent, and to survive the incredibly cold nights without battery or parts freezing up.
Additionally, flying on Mars with the much less dense atmosphere and reduced gravity, presenting a host of issues, not least of all the fact that a standard drone would not have generated enough thrust to even get off the ground.
Many calculations went into this astounding feat, and numerous tests were conducted, but until the moment it actually flew, NASA had no way to exactly replicate the environment, and therefore could not be sure it would even work.
The propellers on NASA’s Helicopter for example, had to rotate significantly faster than it would on Earth, to generate thrust in the low density atmosphere, and this could easily have reduced the balance of the machine, and caused it to crash on the very first test flight.
Enjoy this Martian first in the video footage below, including some interesting details about the NASA’s Helicopter, Perseverance Rover and the mission on Mars.
For more information about NASA’s Helicopter, the Perseverance Rover or the mission to Mars, see the following sites: