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Ingenuity will make its longest flight to date

It’s already happened a little over a year since Perseverance and Ingenuity arrived on the red planet and, although in recent times there is no longer as much information about the mission as in its first months, the truth is that both devices continue to carry out their operations on the surface of Mars and, in this way, advance in a project that has once again shown that engineering, giving its best, can take us to the stars.

The last example of this is found in the next mission that Ingenuity will have to undertake, the helicopter that accompanies the laboratory. But, before talking about said mission, which will constitute his 25th flight, this is a good time to remember that NASA’s initial plans were for the helicopter to be capable of five flights. However, already in April of last year, those responsible for the mission verified that its useful life could be extended beyond what was initially planned, something that is a specialty of NASA, as we have already been able to verify with Hubble.

Thus, as you have already been able to read in the previous paragraph, now Ingenuity is preparing to carry out its 25th flight, thus multiplying by five what was initially expected of him. And it is that thanks to the fact that it has remained operational during all this time, Ingenuity now takes advantage of its ability to fly over the ground to explore the possible routes that Perseverance will later follow.

And to show that he is still in top form, just like JPL has reportedIngenuity will soon carry out his longest flight to date, traveling a total of 704 meters, 80 more than its longest flight to date. This will be possible due to the seasonal change on the red planet, since after the Martian summer, the density of its atmosphere increases with respect to its state in the past months, allowing Ingenuity to stay in the air with less effort. .

Ingenuity and Perseverance now aim to an area of ​​Jezero Crater where water was plentiful in very, very ancient times. The objective, of course, is to look for evidence of whether she once had life there. Thus, Ingenuity will act as an advance guard, and after reconnaissance, Perseverance will follow in his footsteps. As we can read, the flight plan is already loaded in the helicopter, so we can expect the flight to take place in the next few days, as soon as the technicians consider that the appropriate circumstances exist.

At this point, it is very gratifying to remember that, in her very little luggage, Ingenuity carries a small fragment of Flyer I, the aircraft with which the Wright brothers. And it is that, although probably never in his life did they imagine something like that, there is a direct line that connects them with that little helicopter that has managed to fly on Mars.

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