Mars Mission: The first helicopter flight on another planet – using a drone “creativity”

NASA Rover Monastery ‘perseverance’ It has landed successfully on Mars. The robot was launched in July 2020 from the Cape Canaveral spaceport, where it landed with a risky maneuver in a dry lake called Jezero Crater that has not been examined at the site. Shortly after landing, the rover was already sending the first images back to Earth.

Costing about $ 2.5 billion (about 2.2 billion euros), the spacecraft was designed and built for about eight years, and is primarily intended to search for traces of past microbial life on Mars. The robot, which weighs about 1,000 kilograms, has an extremely light helicopter called “Creativity” in its bag. It is said that “creativity” – meaning the English language means “creativity” – flies in the atmosphere of Mars. And it is a special challenge, because the Martian atmosphere is only 1% of the density of Earth’s atmosphere.

Plenty of battery power to heat up the drone

So NASA engineers had to build the drone with as much light as possible in order to take off in the very thin Martian atmosphere. It weighs just 1.8 kg and consists of four feet, a rocket and two propellers. The fans spin 2,400 times per minute, which is five times faster than a conventional helicopter.

Creativity is equipped with four solar panels to recharge its batteries. A large portion of the energy is required to heat up the aircraft again after nighttime temperatures of below 90 degrees. Creativity can take photos and videos of Mars during its travels.

90 second flight

The “creativity” program is expected to complete up to five flights on the surface of Mars. The plane can climb up to five meters and fly up to 300 meters. However, in the first test, a much shorter distance must be covered. Each journey can take up to a minute and a half. NASA maintains that this is not little “compared to the twelve seconds” that the first engine flight took to Earth.

Since transmitting data from Mars to Earth takes about 20 minutes, creativity is not controlled remotely, but rather flies autonomously. NASA issues only basic commands, and “Creativity” uses a series of sensors to direct itself. Flight results will only be available at a later time.

the meaning? Show it works

NASA talks about “creativity” as an illustrative mission. It has no scientific aim other than to demonstrate the possibility of flying on Mars. Additionally, NASA wants to collect data from an aircraft on another planet with the project.

The project’s chief engineer, Bob Ballaram, says such aircraft could “open a whole new era of Mars exploration” in the future. For example, they can reach areas that mobile vehicles cannot reach. It is also envisaged that such small helicopters could “send a report” to a station on Mars in the future, that is, they could provide measurement data, images and rock samples there.

Icon: Mirror

Stan Shaw

<p class="sign">"Professional food nerd. Internet scholar. Typical bacon buff. Passionate creator."</p>

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top