Mars helicopter attempts to set a new speed record on Thursday • The Record

NASA has scheduled the 62nd flight of the Ingenuity Mars helicopter and given it the mission of setting a new rotorcraft speed record on Mars.

Creativity sets a record on every flight – adding one to the number of flights made by a (known) helicopter that humans have sent to the Red Planet.

The helicopter was originally planned to fly only five times, as a technical demonstration. Two and a half years later, the plane is still flying, and was scheduled to do so again on Thursday.

NASA Flight plan This requires the vehicle to rise to a height of 18 meters and travel a distance of 268 meters in 119.3 seconds, at a speed of ten meters per second.

Record He poured ingenuity Trip log In Excel we sorted the data, leading us to conclude that Flight 62 would exceed Flight 60’s maximum speed of 8 meters per second.

Flight 62 would be ranked 24th in distance traveled, and 34th in duration, according to our calculations.

We last covered Ingenuity in July 2023 when it phoned home after landing in a location that left it unable to establish line-of-sight contact with the Perseverance Rover. It relies on such a connection to contact the ground, which makes the phone call of rather great importance. It has been flown nine times since then, with Flight 61 on October 5 setting a new altitude record of 24 metres.

Yes, dear reader, this means that the car that was designed to end its operations more than two years ago is performing better than ever. This is an exceptional result for any system, at any time and in any place, let alone in the extremely challenging environment of Mars.

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This seems to be the season of speed on Mars, as the Perseverance rover recently set its own speed record, when it moved 347.7 meters in one day – without human intervention.

Ingenuity’s attempt at the record will begin and end at Airfield Tau. NASA describes its goals as “science imaging objectives” and “extending the flight envelope.”

“Inspiration” would not be out of place as an addition to that list of goals. ®

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