A dream takes flight! Today, our Ingenuity #MarsHelicopter became the first aircraft in history to make a powered, controlled flight on another planet.
In a video captured by our Perseverance Mars rover, the helicopter is shown hovering above the Red Planet's surface. During this first flight, the helicopter climbed to an altitude of 10 feet (3 meters), hovered, and then touched back down on the surface of Mars.
More images and video to come...
Join us at 2 p.m. ET (18:00 UTC) for an analysis of Ingenuity’s first flight and what's to come:
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I was standing on a cliff overlooking the ocean in a lush green field. Suddenly, a helicopter enters my vision. Dangling from the helicopter is a white horse, suspended by rope of some sort. The rope is cut and the horse plummets into the ocean. It disappears beneath the waves and I wake up.
On August 6, 2011, a U.S. CH-47D Chinook helicopter, call sign Extortion 17, was shot down while transporting an Quick Reaction Force attempting to reinforce a unit of the 75th Ranger Regiment in the Tangi Valley in Maidan Wardak province, southwest of Kabul, Afghanistan.
The resulting crash killed all 38 personnel on board, which included:
23 U.S. Navy SEALs
2 U.S. Air Force Pararescue
1 U.S. Air Force Combat Control Team member
1 pilot and 2 crewmen of the U.S. Army Reserve
1 pilot and 1 crewman of the U.S. Army National Guard
7 members of the Afghan National Security Forces
1 Afghan interpreter
1 U.S. military working dog
PO1 Darrick C. Benson
CPO Brian R. Bill
PO1 Christopher G. Campbell
PO1 Jared W. Day
PO1 John Douangdara & Navy SEAL Dog “Bart”
CPO John W. Faas
CPO Kevin A. Houston
Lt. Cmdr. Jonas B. Kelsall
MCPO Louis J. Langlais
CPO Matthew D. Mason
CPO Stephen M. Mills
CPO Nicholas H. Null
PO1 Jesse D. Pittman
SCPO Thomas A. Ratzlaff
CPO Robert J. Reeves
CPO Heath M. Robinson
PO2 Nicholas P. Spehar
PO1 Michael J. Strange
PO1 Jon T. Tumilson
PO1 Aaron C. Vaughn
SCPO Kraig M. Vickers
PO1 Jason R. Workman
SGT Alexander J. Bennett
SPC Spencer Duncan (youngest onboard)
CWO Bryan J. Nichols
CWO David R. Carter (oldest onboard)
SSG Patrick D. Hamburger
U.S. Air Force:
TSgt John W. Brown
SSgt Andrew W. Harvell
TSgt Daniel L. Zerbe
This is the shadow of Ingenuity, the test helicopter carried by NASA's Perseverance Mars Rover, during its first ever powered flight this morning. The helicopter did a quick test hover and landed successfully afterwards.
ICYMI: New sounds from Mars dropped! Turn the volume up to hear our Ingenuity Mars Helicopter flying on the Red Planet.
Captured by our Perseverance Mars Rover, this is the first time a spacecraft on another planet has recorded the sounds of a separate spacecraft. In this audio track, Perseverance used its SuperCam microphone to listen to the Ingenuity helicopter on April 30, 2021 as it flew on Mars for the fourth time.
With Perseverance parked 262 feet (80 meters) from the helicopter’s takeoff and landing spot, the mission wasn’t sure if the microphone would pick up any sound of the flight. Even during flight when the helicopter’s blades are spinning at 2,537 rpm, the sound is greatly muffled by the thin Martian atmosphere. It is further obscured by Martian wind gusts during the initial moments of the flight. Listen closely, though, and the helicopter’s hum can be heard faintly above the sound of those winds.
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