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NASA to send Mars Helicopter along with next Red Planet rover in 2020

The engineers at JPL have been working to get the weight and state of the helicopter just right, so it can fly through the thin Mars air. On earth 40,000 feet is the max flying height which has been achieved by helicopters.

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NASA is sending a helicopter to mars when it launches its next space agency’s Mars Rover in the year of 2020. The helicopter will be named the Mars Helicopter and it will be attached belly dish of the Rover. The small self-sufficient rotorcraft will go to Earth’s far off neighbor to exhibit the suitability and capability of heavier-than-air vehicles on another planet.

Thomas Zurubuchen the NASA science mission directorate associate administrator said that 117 years ago, Wright brothers proved that Fueled, sustained, powered and controlled flight was conceivable on earth and a group of other American pioneers may end up proving that the same can be achieved on another world.

The outline for the Mars Helicopter has been in progress from past four years at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory; however, the space agency still couldn’t seem to decide that it was actually planning to send the vehicle to Mars. NASA had to decide whether this innovation was really practical and if the organization had enough cash in its financial plan to incorporate the copter, concurring. Presently it appears that the organization has chosen that this copter thought could really work.

Even if the helicopter is unable to fly, it will not influence the general mission of the Mars 2020 rover — the successor to NASA’s Curiosity rover which is as of now on the Red Planet’s surface. But at the end, if the helicopter ends up flying it’ll have the capacity to catch a rare bird’s-eye-perspective of Mars with its two cameras, something that is never been finished. What’s more, that may mean it’s conceivable to send future flying vehicles to Mars to investigate areas that are difficult to get to.

“The altitude record for a helicopter flying here on Earth is about 40,000 feet. The atmosphere of Mars is only one percent that of Earth, so when our helicopter is on the Martian surface, it’s already at the Earth equivalent of 100,000 feet up,” said Mimi Aung, Mars Helicopter project manager at JPL. “To make it fly at that low atmospheric density, we had to scrutinize everything, make it as light as possible while being as strong and as powerful as it can possibly be.”

The engineers at JPL have been working to get the weight and state of the helicopter just right, so it can fly through the thin Mars air. On earth 40,000 feet is the max flying height which has been achieved by helicopters. However, the Mars Helicopter will fly in a climate that is as thin as heights of 100,000 feet on Earth, as indicated by NASA. So the robot must be little and light: it tips the scales at only four pounds (1.8 kilograms) on Earth and is about the measure of a softball. The copter likewise brandishes twin edges that turn 10 times quicker than helicopter’s here on our planet.

“We don’t have a pilot and Earth will be several light minutes away, so there is no way to joystick this mission in real time,” said Aung. “Instead, we have an autonomous capability that will be able to receive and interpret commands from the ground, and then fly the mission on its own.”

The arrangement is for the Mars Helicopter to fly connected to the underside of the Mars 2020 rover. Once the wanderer arrives on the planet’s surface, it will then find a decent place to set down the copter, deploy it, and after that roll away. In the long run, the helicopter will attempt to take off, and it’ll have to fly on its own. Since Earth is so far from Mars, it will take a few minutes to send the commands to the helicopter. At last, the vehicle will endeavor to complete five self-governing flights over a 30-day time span; the excursions could last up to 90 seconds.

“NASA has a glad history of firsts,” NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine said in an announcement on Friday evening, amidst SpaceX’s Block 5 dispatch. “The possibility of a helicopter flying the skies of another planet is exciting. The Mars Helicopter holds much guarantee for our future science, disclosure, and investigation missions to Mars.”

The Mars 2020 wanderer is slated to dispatch over an Atlas V rocket, made by the United Launch Alliance, from Cape Canaveral, Florida in July 2020. The rocket will then arrive on Mars in February 2021.

 

Mars 2020 will launch on a United Launch Alliance (ULA) Atlas V rocket from Space Launch Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida, and is expected to reach Mars in February 2021.

The rover will conduct geological assessments of its landing site on Mars, determine the habitability of the environment, search for signs of ancient Martian life, and assess natural resources and hazards for future human explorers. Scientists will use the instruments aboard the rover to identify and collect samples of rock and soil, encase them in sealed tubes, and leave them on the planet’s surface for potential return to Earth on a future Mars mission.

The Mars 2020 Project at JPL in Pasadena, California, manages rover development for the Science Mission Directorate at NASA Headquarters in Washington. NASA’s Launch Services Program, based at the agency’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida, is responsible for launch management.

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Ron Miller

Ron Miller

An analytical and detail-oriented journalist with PhD. in science, who is having a vast experience in writing articles about mysteries of Earth and human behavior. Ron has a strong background in writing with excellent editing and proofreading skills.

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