Perseverance rover begins to cross the surface of Mars

NASA's Ingenuity Mars helicopter accomplishes its first one-way excursion

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The image from one of the “Perseverance” hazard cameras shows the rover’s trajectory across the ground from its initial short distance. Image source: NASA / JPL-Caltech

In the weeks since NASA Successful landing It is a persistent rover on the surface of Mars, and the images, science and sound obtained from the mission have proven to be groundbreaking.

A few days after the touchdown, NASA shared an incredible image of the Perseverance landing; it can provide the public with a dramatic video recording of the complexity of Mars landing without relying on engineering renderings.

In addition to the initial video provided on landing, Perseverance also showed people 9,000 pictures From its extremely advanced camera and imaging tool suite; the most high-tech of all the rover built by NASA.

One of the many functions of the Jezero Crater that scientists are eager to achieve. NASA/JPL-Caltech

One of the many functions of the Jezero Crater that scientists are eager to achieve. NASA/JPL-Caltech

Engineers at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory have been powering up the rover over the past few weeks and ensuring that all of its airborne systems are functioning properly, including rotating it around the red planet.

On March 4, the JPL team placed the rover on the first power drive on the surface of Mars, bringing the rover to life. The drive lasted a total of 33 minutes and the total distance was approximately 21.3 feet (6.5 meters).

This move caused the rover to move 13 feet (4 meters) forward, then rotated 150 degrees to the left, then backed 8 feet, and then stopped at the new “base” on Mars.

“When it comes to wheeled vehicles on other planets, there are very few first events that are more meaningful than the first drive event,” said Anais Zarifian, an engineer at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory’s Mars 2020 Perseverance Rover Mobility Testbed. “This is our first opportunity to’kick the tires’ and try tirelessly. The Ranger’s six-wheel drive response is excellent. Now, we believe that our drive system is working well and will be able to take us to whatever can lead us in the next two years. Where we are moving forward.”

In addition to the important data collected in Perseverance’s first six-wheel drive, the scientists also used this opportunity to examine the impact of the endurance. Powered rocket landing On the surface of Mars. Engineers used the vehicle-mounted hazard cameras of the rover to inspect the “explosive area” where the rover originally landed.

As of March 13, Perseverance roamer website Shows that the vehicle has traveled about 300 feet (about 91 meters).In addition, the “belly pan” under the mobile station is pop up Reveal the bottom of the sample caching system.

A view of the area washed by the Perseverance Rover during the descending phase. Image source: NASA / JPL-Caltech

A view of the area washed by the Perseverance Rover during the descending phase. Image source: NASA / JPL-Caltech

One of the next main tasks is to deploy a miniature Martian helicopter named “Ingenuity”. Currently, it is safely stored under the mobile station. Engineers will need to find a suitable location to deploy the helicopter.

In the next few weeks, Ingenuity will make its debut and will conduct a short autonomous flight in a short period of time, lasting about 20 seconds.

If the Ingenuity technology demonstrator is successful, it will mark the first powered flight on the surface of Mars. In order for the experiment to proceed normally, many factors must be considered comprehensively.

The weather sensor of the Hengxin spacecraft will be deployed on February 28, 2021. Image Credit: NASA/Caltech

The weather sensor of the Hengxin spacecraft will be deployed on February 28, 2021. Image Credit: NASA/Caltech

First, the weather must be very calm. On Mars, the weather may change rapidly, and the situation will become extremely bad within a few minutes. To ensure good conditions, Airbus has developed an on-board automatic weather reporting system that will monitor the situation in real time.

Just like the METAR aviation weather reporting system on earth, the Airbus system will ensure that Ingenuity’s flight conditions are just right.

This is the case with the little Mars helicopter. Weighing only about 4 pounds (1.8 kg), it must be small enough not only to be mounted on a rover, but also to be light enough to fly in the thin atmosphere of Mars.

Since the atmosphere is indeed much thinner than the earth, the rotors on Ingenuity are very large and make up most of the aircraft’s surface area. The helicopter has two counter-rotating blades, spans about 4 feet (1.2 meters), and rotates at 2,800 revolutions per minute. For comparison, the average rotation speed of the helicopter on the earth is about 400 revolutions per minute.

Since the controller on the ground experienced an 11-minute Mars-to-ground communication delay, the helicopter was completely autonomous, which made it impossible to control the airship in real time. Regardless of its success or failure, the data collected from the “witty” attempted flight will prove to be of invaluable value, providing scientists with a new platform for advanced flights on the surface of Mars.

Video provided by NASA

Mark as:

Disvoggs had a lifelong interest in crew spaceflight. He realized his passion during a family vacation in 1999, when he was able to see the launch of the space shuttle found on the STS-96. Since then, Desforges has been a fan of space exploration work. He lived in Orlando, Florida for a year, during which time he had the opportunity to witness the flight of the historic CRS-4 and EFT-1 missions at Cape Canaveral. He obtained his private pilot certificate in 2017, holds a degree in aviation management, and currently works as an operations analyst for the aviation industry in Georgia.



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