Mars helicopter Ingenuity soars by sturdy 12th flight on Red Planet

Mars helicopter Ingenuity soars by sturdy 12th flight on Red Planet

NASA’s Mars helicopter Ingenuity made its 12th Red Planet flight on Monday (Aug. 16), by which the diminutive chopper served as eyes within the sky for its greater partner, the Perseverance rover.

The flight turn out to be designed to attend as reconnaissance for the rover’s persevering with explorations of a neighborhood dubbed South Séítah, in step with a flight idea NASA posted before the try that called the sortie “valorous.”

Flying over Séítah South carries colossal possibility on memoir of the varied terrain,” Ingenuity scientists wrote within the thought. “When we expend to accumulate the dangers related to this sort of flight, it is on memoir of the correspondingly high rewards. Brilliant that now we delight in the opportunity to support the Perseverance team with science planning by offering distinctive aerial pictures is the total motivation foremost.”

AssociatedPeer NASA’s Mars helicopter Ingenuity uncover appealing Raised Ridges

A photograph from Ingenuity's 12th flight, conducted on Aug. 16, 2021, shows the silhouette of the helicopter on the rippled surface of Mars.

A photo from Ingenuity’s 12th flight, carried out on Aug. 16, 2021, reveals the silhouette of the helicopter on the rippled floor of Mars. (Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech)

Unlike most of its fresh flights, this sortie seen Ingenuity impression a spherical time out. That replacement matched the flight’s cause. While the helicopter had been centered on conserving ahead of Perseverance, this time Ingenuity turn out to be gathering detailed scouting files for the rover.

That is because while flying over South Séítah is harmful for the diminutive chopper, utilizing by the space will likely be harmful for the Perseverance rover. But the space will likely be burly of appealing rocks that Perseverance’s science team would admire to seem up shut.

So the 10 or so color photos and the stereo scene that Ingenuity turn out to be directed to expend at some level of its flight will guide Perseverance scientists as they expend the attach to level the rover. After Perseverance’s first sampling try failed to expend any rock, the team is procuring for a brand original target to please in a uncover at packing away for a future mission to ferry to Earth.

Ingenuity team members record statistics and notes about each flight in a log book; this spread shows the entries for the helicopter's ninth and 10th flights.

Ingenuity team contributors legend statistics and notes about every flight in a log guide; this spread reveals the entries for the helicopter’s ninth and 10th flights. (Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech)

For the length of its first 11 flights, Ingenuity had flown a entire of about 1.4 miles (2.2 kilometers) and spent almost 19 minutes within the Martian skies, in step with tallies offered by NASA. The 12th flight added almost 1,500 feet (450 meters) and 169 seconds to that total.

Ingenuity has vastly exceeded its long-established directive, to impress five flights around its preliminary deployment save over the route of a month to point out that flying a rotorcraft on Mars is means.

E-mail Meghan Bartels at [email protected] or be conscious her on Twitter @meghanbartels. Practice us on Twitter @Spacedotcom and on Facebook. 

Meghan Bartels

Meghan is a senior writer at and has bigger than five years’ trip as a science journalist essentially based mostly fully in Unique York City. She joined in July 2018, with outdated writing printed in retailers at the side of Newsweek and Audubon. Meghan earned an MA in science journalism from Unique York University and a BA in classics from Georgetown University, and in her free time she enjoys reading and visiting museums. Practice her on Twitter at @meghanbartels.

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