What is Ingenuity Helicopter?
NASA recently announced that its Ingenuity Helicopter has been dropped on the surface of mars successfully and is in preparation for its first flight.
- Ingenuity is a technology demonstration of powered flight in another planet.
- NASA is to perform a series of test flights over thirty Martian days with the help of Ingenuity helicopter.
- The main challenge of Ingenuity Helicopter is that it would have to survive temperatures as low as -130 degrees Fahrenheit. Such low temperatures could freeze and crack the onboard batteries in the craft. The helicopter has successfully survived the temperature.
- The helicopter weighs 1.8 kilograms.
- It is a solar powered helicopter. The energy from the solar array in the helicopter will power the helicopter and also keep it warm during night.
- The full speed of the helicopter is 2,400 rpm.
- It is to reach a maximum height of 4.6 metres in Mars.
- The Ingenuity helicopter was dropped on the Martian surface by the Perseverance rover as a part of Mars 2020 mission.
- The Perseverance rover is an astrobiology mission. The mission aims to search signs of ancient microbial life in mars.
- The mission will characterize the geology and past climate of the planet.
- Perseverance is the first mission to collect Martian rock and regolith (broken rock and dust).
- Curiosity is the predecessor of Perseverance rover.
- The rover carries seven payload instruments, two micro phones and nineteen cameras.
- It will drill the Martian soil and collect core samples of martian rocks.
Mars 2020 Mission
Mars 2020 mission was launched in July 2020. It is a part of Mars Exploration Programme of NASA. Mars 2020 mission was launched from Atlas V Launch vehicle.
It is one of the three missions launched to Mars in 2020. The other two Mars missions were as follows:
- Tianwen-1 mission launched by China
- Hope Orbiter by UAE
Category: Science & Technology Current Affairs