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NASA to send a helicopter to Mars

13 May 2018
NASA to send a helicopter to Mars

NASA in 2020 will send to Mars a small helicopter that will be based on the Mars Rover of the next generation.

NASA officials also added that the rotorcraft will land on Mars attached to a car-sized rover.

They further informed that it took 4 years for the team to design, test and redesign the Marscopter that weighs in at little under four pounds (1.8 kilograms).

But JPL has made sure that the Mars Helicopter has everything it needs to fearless the rough environment on the Red Planet.

Designers at JPL have actually been functioning to obtain the weight and also form of the helicopter ideal, to make sure that it could fly via the slim Mars air.

BBC notes that existing vehicles on Mars have been wheeled ones bound on the planet's surface, which is prone to running into obstacles.

If Mars Helicopter works, it will constitute another space first for NASA, the first flight on another world.

The remote-controlled Mars Helicopter is created to take flight in the thin Martian atmosphere with twin counter-rotating blades.

Yet also if the helicopter can not fly, it will not impact the total goal of the Mars 2020 vagabond- the follower to NASA's Inquisitiveness vagabond which is now on the Red World's surface area.

"NASA has a proud history of firsts", said NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine. The planet's very thin atmosphere is not ideal for the flying of helicopters.

"To make it fly at that low atmospheric density, we had to scrutinise everything, make it as light as possible while being as strong and as powerful as it can possibly be", Ms Aung added.

They hope that it will prove the technology for future flight explorations of Mars and provide more data on the atmosphere. Controllers from Earth will deliver commands to the helicopter to take its first autonomous flight after its batteries are charged and tests are conducted. Mars is about 20 light minutes away from Earth.

The exploratory mission is scheduled to launch in July 2020. "Instead, we have an autonomous capability that will be able to receive and interpret commands from the ground, and then fly the mission on its own", she said. The six-wheeled rover will hunt for signs of habitable environments as well as sites that may have once hosted microbial life, examining the Red Planet with 23 cameras, a microphone and a drill to collect samples. Eventually, the vehicle will certainly attempt to do 5 self-governing trips over a 30-day duration; the journeys can last approximately 90 secs.