April 20, 2021

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“Ingenuity helicopter” survived the cold night of Mars -90 degrees Celsius

Ingenuity helicopter
NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory said that the "Ingenuity helicopter" successfully passed the test and was an "important milestone."

NASA announced on Tuesday that the Ingenuity helicopter of the Perseverance Mars rover, successfully spent the first night of minus 90 degrees Celsius on Mars alone.

Since the Perseverance landed on Mars on February 18, the mini-helicopter “Wit” it carried has been hidden in its belly. Last Saturday, when the “Perseverance” reached the predetermined location, the “Wit” separated and landed, and then the “Perseverance” left the helicopter and its flight field. The Ingenuity helicopter used to rely on the “Perseverance” power system for heat preservation, but since then it must use its own battery to run important heaters to protect the parts on the aircraft from freezing and cracking on the cold night of Mars, and because of its landing place In the night, the lowest temperature can reach minus 90 degrees, and it is very important to survive the first night. NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory said that the “Ingenuity helicopter” successfully passed the test and was an “important milestone.”

It must fly in the Martian atmosphere with a density of only 1% of the earth. Ascent may be more difficult, but the gravity of Mars is only one-third that of the earth, which will provide some assistance for flight.

The statement stated: “We confirm that we have the right insulation materials, suitable heaters, and enough energy in the battery to withstand the cold night of Mars. We are excited to continue preparing for the first test flight of the wit.” If all goes well, “Wit” is expected to conduct its first test flight as early as April 11, becoming the first aircraft to attempt powered and controlled flight on another planet

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