NASA is setting new standards for exploring Mars. It first sent across a helicopter that rode piggyback on the rover Perseverance. Once on the surface of the red planet, Ingenuity flew for the first time. It was a short one to prove that it could take off and land on its own.

Subsequently, it undertook four more flights. Each of them was to outdo the parameters set by the earlier one. Finally, after four historic flights, it has successfully flown to a new destination. It was a one-way flight for the 4-lb chopper to its new airfield with no plan to return to the Wright Brothers Field.

CNN reports that for its fifth fight, Ingenuity reached an altitude of 16 feet and later to 33 feet to capture images of the new airfield. It flew for 423 feet and followed the same route as the fourth one when it was on the lookout for the next location. Its total flying time was 108 seconds. Mars is waiting for Ingenuity to open up new horizons.

The fifth flight of Ingenuity was positive for NASA

An official of NASA confirmed: "The fifth flight of the Mars Helicopter is another great achievement for the agency." He added that the continued success of Ingenuity proves the capability of the agency to fly an aircraft on another planet. He also mentioned the inspiration the team drew from the Wright Brothers.

He described them as "those two bicycle builders from Dayton."

The dedicated efforts of teams associated with Artificial Intelligence, robotics, and renewable energy made it possible to fly a helicopter on another planet. CNN goes on to add the Perseverance rover captured visuals of the flights and used the rover's microphones to collect audio from Ingenuity's fourth flight.

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It was able to pick up the hum of the helicopter from a distance of nearly 262 feet. NASA is creating history on Mars with its Ingenuity helicopter.

Ingenuity could be on Mas until the end of August

NASA has its work cut out. Ingenuity is adapting to the environment of Mars. Its power system is providing enough energy to keep the machine warm during frigid Martian nights and fly during the day.

CNN mentions that with the completion of the fifth flight, Ingenuity would fly for at least another month on Mars.

During this period, it would convert from a technology demonstration model to an operations demonstration model. The phase would continue for 30 Martian sols, equivalent to 31 Earth days. This would be in addition to the 30 sols allotted for the preparatory stage.

Tasks assigned to Ingenuity include aerial observation of specific scientific targets. It will also observe features not readily accessible by rovers like Perseverance. Another of its tasks would be to scout for potentially intriguing scientific sites. NASA expects Ingenuity to complete its assigned tasks by the end of August.

Ingenuity moves to a new destination

According to New York Times, NASA's Mars robotic helicopter Ingenuity has moved to a new destination. After a few flights to get accustomed to a new environment, it landed on the red planet and made a successful one-way trip to another flat patch of Mars some distance away. The physical movement of a rover over the rough terrain of Mars is a slow process. A helicopter is a better choice since it can take aerial images.

That would help the ground team to focus on specific locations of interest. Ingenuity is more or less on its own. It undertook the flight with no help or communication from people on Earth. They had sent the flight plan a few hours earlier, which it followed.

The helicopter could carry out aerial surveys of the surrounding landscape for the Perseverance scientists searching for signs of life on Mars. Other countries also have the Red Planet on their agenda, but America has a head start.