New color PHOTOS taken by NASA Ingenuity helicopter on Mars


NASA’s Ingenuity helicopter made its maiden flight on Mars in this still image taken from video on April 19, 2021. NASA / JPL-Caltech / ASU / Handout via REUTERS

NASA’s groundbreaking Ingenuity Mars helicopter made its ninth flight over the rocky surface of the planet Mars on July 5, taking color photos of the landscape for the first time.

For RT

The images show outcrops that show contacts between the main geological units in the Jezero crater floor. Scientists believe that the formation is a dry bed of an ancient lake, making it a particularly interesting region to look for signs of life.

Photo: NASA/JPL-Caltech
Photo: NASA/JPL-Caltech

According to a July 7 NASA update written by Ingenuity Mars Chief Pilot Havard Grip, the aircraft broke “records for flight duration and cruising speed” and “nearly quadrupled the distance flown between two airfields. “, Which covers 625 meters. Additionally, the Ingenuity Mars, which weighs only four pounds, flew over terrain that was not mostly flat for the first time, challenging the team controlling it from NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

Photo: NASA/JPL-Caltech
Photo: NASA/JPL-Caltech

“Differences in terrain height cause figures to move across the field of view at different speeds, and the Ingenuity navigation algorithm still ‘assumes’ that the ground below is flat,” Grip stresses, adding that “ it does its best to explain the movement of the figures by changes in the helicopter’s movements, which can lead to errors ”.

Photo: NASA/JPL-Caltech
Photo: NASA/JPL-Caltech

Photographs taken by Ingenuity Mars will help NASA engineers decide whether to send the Perseverance rover to the rocky and sand dune area to collect ground samples. Thus, in less than three minutes, Ingenuity saved Perseverance the months that he would have had to spend driving to take his own photographs.

Photo: NASA/JPL-Caltech
Photo: NASA/JPL-Caltech

“[La misión está] designed to be high risk, high reward, so it makes sense for us to take those additional risks due to the potential prize, ”Grip concluded.