NASA’s rover has caught another glimpse of its pioneering robotic cousin.
“#MarsHelicopter and I are closer together than we’ve been in a while, and guess who you saw resting on the dunes between flights. Can you believe Creativity is gearing up for Flight 39?” Perseverance team he said via Twitter (Opens in a new tab) On Wednesday (January 11th), in a post that featured a photo of the mini-helicopter.
Creativity and perseverance landed together inside MarsJezero Crater in February 2021. The 28-mile (45-kilometer) wide island of Jezero hosted a large lake and river delta long ago, and Perseverance scour the area for ancient signs. life on Mars.
The six-wheeled robot also collects and caches dozens of samples for return to Earth in the future. For the past few weeks, Perseverance has been, too Temporarily storing some of her sample tubes in a “warehouse” On a patch of Jezero floors that the mission team calls Three Forks.
Perseverance has been deposited so far Six sample tubes out of 10 planned (Opens in a new tab) at the Three Forks repository, which serves as a backup in case the rover isn’t healthy enough to transfer materials to a NASA lander later in the decade. A rocket aboard the lander will launch those samples into Mars orbit, where they will be picked up by a European spacecraft and returned to Earth. Samples can land here Early in the year 2033.
Double warehouse samples. Perseverance is the retention of a group of materials excavated from the same target rock on its body. If needed, two creation-like helicopters that will be launched with the futuristic lander will fly to Three Forks and grab the sample tubes one by one.
Ingenuity is currently serving as a perseverance scout, helping the rover team choose the best routes through the rugged landscapes of Jezero and identifying promising outcrops for in-depth study.
This action is part of the helicopter’s expanded mission. Shortly after landing, Ingenuity achieved its primary five-flight campaign, demonstrating that powered flight is possible anywhere. Mars atmosphere.
Ingenuity conducted its 39th Mars flyby on Wednesday, covering 459 feet (140 meters) of Earth over the course of about 79 seconds. So far, the helicopter has flown a total of 25,690 feet (7,830 meters) on Mars and stayed in the air for more than 64 minutes, according to Mission flight log (Opens in a new tab).
Perseverance has captured images of creativity before. The rover took pictures of the helicopter after posting it right on the floor of Jezero, for example, and also Recorded video of Ingenuity 13 flightthat occurred in September 2021.
Mike Wall is the author of “Abroad (Opens in a new tab)Book (Major Grand Publishing, 2018; illustration by Carl Tate), a book about the search for alien life. Follow him on Twitter @employee (Opens in a new tab). Follow us on Twitter @tweet (Opens in a new tab) and on Facebook (Opens in a new tab).