NASA's Ingenuity helicopter will attempt to fly on Mars for the fourth time today and could reach airspeeds of up to eight miles per hour as it soars for two minutes. The space agency said it would continue to push the 4lb copter to its limit in each subsequent test, this time almost doubling the speed of the third flight. The 18 inch tall craft will take off from'Wright Brothers Field' under the watchful gaze of the Perseverance rover at 10:12 EDT (15:12 BST), and soar up 16ft into the sky. Due to delays in sending data from the 187 million miles between Jezero crater on Mars and NASA JPL in California, we won't know if it worked until 13:21 EDT (18:21 BST). The small craft achieved all of its goals including flight duration, distance and speed, in the first three trips - so the fourth will'push the envelope' beyond what the small rotorcraft was designed to achieve by NASA JPL engineers. It will fly up to 16ft, head south over rocks, sand ripples and impact craters for 276ft and use its navigation camera to collect images of the surface every 4ft.
Apr-29-2021, 13:08:22 GMT