The Ingenuity helicopter already has 41 flights performed in the atmosphere of Mars. The new mark is the result of the most recent flight on the Red Planet, carried out on Friday (27). That day, the small aircraft covered more than 180 meters in approximately 109 seconds.
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“Ingenuity took to the Martian skies to provide a bird’s eye view of the Martian team. [rover] Perseverance!” NASA officials wrote in a Twitter post. They also included a brief animation, made up of photos taken by the aircraft during the flight.
In the animation, you can see Ingenuity’s shadow against the sand and dunes on Mars. Flight data shows that he returned to Airfield Beta, the “resting area” he was in on the previous flight.
After landing on the planet with the Perseverance rover in 2021, Ingenuity has been surprising scientists. It is a technology demonstration designed to test the first controlled flights ever performed on another world over the course of 30 days. The first of these took place in April of that year, when Ingenuity reached an altitude of 3 m, held itself in the air, completed a turn and landed.
Since then, he has performed more daring flights, which have gradually taken him to greater altitudes and distances. Today, Ingenuity has been operating on its extended mission, in which it accompanies the Perseverance rover and helps scientists identify areas that are dangerous for the rover, or targets of scientific interest.