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Mars helicopter Ingenuity achieves record altitude

Mars helicopter Ingenuity achieves record altitude NASA has reported that the helicopter on Mars has reached a record height for itself (Photo:
Author: Daria Shekina

The helicopter Ingenuity, developed by the American agency NASA, reached a record height on Mars. The craft remained in the air for 2 minutes and 46 seconds, according to NASA JPN's social media page.

This is the maximum height that the Ingenuity spacecraft has reached so far. Previously, on April 13, 2023, the craft had ascended to 18 meters, covering a distance of 322 meters.

NASA is conducting experiments on another planet for the first time in its history. Commands are sent from Earth in advance, and the helicopter receives them, takes off, flies, and lands autonomously.

The weight of the helicopter is 1.8 kilograms, which allows it to be carried under the rover on the way to the planet and survive in harsh conditions. It is powerful enough to take off on Mars.

The history and mission of Ingenuity

The first flight on Mars took place on April 19, 2021. Initially, NASA planned to conduct five experimental flights. Its mission is to provide a preliminary survey of areas on Mars that may be of interest for exploration by the Perseverance rover.

The helicopter is designed for flights lasting up to 90 seconds, covering distances of nearly 300 meters at a time and flying at an altitude of approximately 3 to 4.5 meters above the surface.

In total, the helicopter has completed 59 flights. In its first flight, the craft ascended to 3 meters in 39.1 seconds. As of September 20, 2023, it has accumulated 106.5 minutes of flight time, covered a distance of 13.3 kilometers, and reached altitudes of up to 20.0 meters.