Sunday May 9, 2021 at 10:13 a.m. – Although NASA’s Mars Exploration Team of the Perseverance Probe and Ingenuity Small Helicopter, despite being located some 225 million kilometers from us, continues to grow. The latest to date: recording the sound of creative feathers in flight.
1% is the density of Mars’ atmosphere compared to Earth. Taking off and flying a machine is a feat. NASA has successfully accomplished this mission since Ingenuity has performed a total of five flights since its arrival on the red planet. During the fourth stage, Perseverance assigned a pleasant surprise to the team of scientists: an audio recording of the acceptable quality of helicopter blades piercing the Martian air.
Creativity on her fifth voyage, photographed by Wagon of Perseverance. Credit: NASA / JPL-Caltech
This low atmospheric density makes taking off and flying machines more difficult. This is why Ingenuity achieves this thanks to an intense revolution of its blades from 2,400 rpm. However, this intensity, similar to that of 30,000 meters on Earth, also means that sound has a weaker ability to travel. That’s why NASA decided it would be surprising to hear any sound coming from creativity. The team also ran several tests and simulations that confirmed their hypothesis. At best, I expected a thud. 80 meters away from creativity, persistence was able, against all expectations, to record a soundtrack in which we hear the wind blowing over the Jizero crater, then the helicopter roar rising into the sky. Then the NASA Propulsion Laboratory team performed some manipulations, including isolating specific frequencies, to achieve a clearer end result. You can hear all of this in the video at the top of the article. This discovery is very important for understanding the atmosphere of our neighboring planet.
30-day extended mission
Creativity image after his fifth trip. Credit: NASA / JPL-Caltech
Innovation successes on the red planet allow NASA to extend its mission for 30 days. In fact, the helicopter was not only able to soar in the sky of Mars on five occasions, but it was also able to cover at least 260 meters by air. The fifth and final test to date was Ingenuity’s first one-way ticket. So we can say that his first challenges were successfully met. These trips were part of Ingenuity’s core mission. Now he can move on to his second mission, which is to support his perseverance in his search for ancient life on Mars. Unlike the Rover, the small helicopter is able to overcome obstacles on the ground and observe a wider horizon. By setting off, Ingenuity will be able to find the best ways to help persevere in completing her scientific research. However, helicopter days are numbered because the flying machine was not built to withstand the extreme temperatures found on Mars for a long time.
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