Author Topic: Perseverance Mars Rover  (Read 14474 times)

BridgeTroll

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Re: Perseverance Mars Rover
« Reply #60 on: April 19, 2021, 06:57:18 AM »
Confirmed success!!!!!  8)
In a boat at sea one of the men began to bore a hole in the bottom of the boat. On being remonstrating with, he answered, "I am only boring under my own seat." "Yes," said his companions, "but when the sea rushes in we shall all be drowned with you."

BridgeTroll

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In a boat at sea one of the men began to bore a hole in the bottom of the boat. On being remonstrating with, he answered, "I am only boring under my own seat." "Yes," said his companions, "but when the sea rushes in we shall all be drowned with you."

BridgeTroll

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Re: Perseverance Mars Rover
« Reply #62 on: April 19, 2021, 08:28:57 AM »
Ingenuity shadow selfie... freeking iconic!



Ingenuity's First Black-and-White Image From the Air: NASA’s Ingenuity Mars Helicopter took this shot while hovering over the Martian surface on April 19, 2021, during the first instance of powered, controlled flight on another planet. It used its navigation camera, which autonomously tracks the ground during flight. Credits: NASA/JPL-Caltech. Full image and caption ›
In a boat at sea one of the men began to bore a hole in the bottom of the boat. On being remonstrating with, he answered, "I am only boring under my own seat." "Yes," said his companions, "but when the sea rushes in we shall all be drowned with you."

Charles Hunter

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Re: Perseverance Mars Rover
« Reply #63 on: April 19, 2021, 10:46:46 AM »
According to the NASA TV site, they will play the helicopter flight at 11:30 AM Eastern time today (Tuesday, April 19).
https://www.nasa.gov/multimedia/nasatv/#public

BridgeTroll

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Re: Perseverance Mars Rover
« Reply #64 on: April 19, 2021, 01:03:41 PM »
According to the NASA TV site, they will play the helicopter flight at 11:30 AM Eastern time today (Tuesday, April 19).
https://www.nasa.gov/multimedia/nasatv/#public

Unfortunately for NASA I suspect most people will be watching something else...
In a boat at sea one of the men began to bore a hole in the bottom of the boat. On being remonstrating with, he answered, "I am only boring under my own seat." "Yes," said his companions, "but when the sea rushes in we shall all be drowned with you."

BridgeTroll

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Re: Perseverance Mars Rover
« Reply #65 on: April 19, 2021, 03:07:48 PM »
In a boat at sea one of the men began to bore a hole in the bottom of the boat. On being remonstrating with, he answered, "I am only boring under my own seat." "Yes," said his companions, "but when the sea rushes in we shall all be drowned with you."

Charles Hunter

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Re: Perseverance Mars Rover
« Reply #66 on: April 19, 2021, 03:30:23 PM »
Needs Ride of the Valkyries playing behind it.

But, seriously folks, that is quite an achievement. Can't wait to see video from Ingenuity as it scouts the area.

BridgeTroll

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Re: Perseverance Mars Rover
« Reply #67 on: April 23, 2021, 06:49:35 AM »
Second flight test success!

https://mars.nasa.gov/news/8928/nasas-ingenuity-mars-helicopter-logs-second-successful-flight/

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NASA’s Ingenuity helicopter successfully completed its second Mars flight on April 22 – the 18th sol, or Martian day, of its experimental flight test window. Lasting 51.9 seconds, the flight added several new challenges to the first, which took place on April 19, including a higher maximum altitude, longer duration, and sideways movement.

“So far, the engineering telemetry we have received and analyzed tell us that the flight met expectations and our prior computer modeling has been accurate,” said Bob Balaram, chief engineer for the Ingenuity Mars Helicopter at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Southern California. “We have two flights of Mars under our belts, which means that there is still a lot to learn during this month of Ingenuity.”

For this second flight test at “Wright Brothers Field,” Ingenuity took off again at 5:33 a.m. EDT (2:33 a.m. PDT), or 12:33 p.m. local Mars time. But where Flight One topped out at 10 feet (3 meters) above the surface, Ingenuity climbed to 16 feet (5 meters) this time. After the helicopter hovered briefly, its flight control system performed a slight (5-degree) tilt, allowing some of the thrust from the counter-rotating rotors to accelerate the craft sideways for 7 feet (2 meters).

“The helicopter came to a stop, hovered in place, and made turns to point its camera in different directions,” said Håvard Grip, Ingenuity’s chief pilot at JPL. “Then it headed back to the center of the airfield to land. It sounds simple, but there are many unknowns regarding how to fly a helicopter on Mars. That’s why we’re here – to make these unknowns known.”

 Operating an aircraft in a controlled manner at Mars is far more difficult than flying one on Earth. Even though gravity on Mars is about one third that of Earth’s, the helicopter must fly with the assistance of an atmosphere with only about 1% of the density at Earth’s surface. Each second of each flight provides an abundance of Mars in-flight data for comparison to the modeling, simulations, and tests performed back here on Earth. And NASA also gains its first practical experience operating a rotorcraft remotely at Mars. These datasets will prove invaluable for potential future Mars missions that could enlist next-generation helicopters to add an aerial dimension to their explorations.

The Ingenuity Mars Helicopter project is a high-risk, high-reward technology demonstration. If Ingenuity were to encounter difficulties during its 30-sol mission, the science-gathering of NASA’s Perseverance Mars rover mission wouldn’t be impacted.

As with the first test, the Perseverance rover obtained imagery of the flight attempt from 211 feet (64.3 meters) away at “Van Zyl Overlook” using its Navcam and Mastcam-Z imagers. The initial set of data – including imagery – from the flight was received by the Ingenuity team beginning at 9:20 a.m. EDT (6:20 a.m. PDT).

“For the second flight, we tried a slightly different approach to the zoom level on one of the cameras,” said Justin Maki, Perseverance project imaging scientist and Mastcam-Z deputy principal investigator at JPL. “For the first flight, one of the cameras was fully zoomed in on the takeoff and landing zone. For the second flight we zoomed that camera out a bit for a wider field of view to capture more of the flight.”

Because the data and imagery indicate that the Mars Helicopter not only survived the second flight but also flew as anticipated, the Ingenuity team is considering how best to expand the profiles of its next flights to acquire additional aeronautical data from the first successful flight tests on another world. 
In a boat at sea one of the men began to bore a hole in the bottom of the boat. On being remonstrating with, he answered, "I am only boring under my own seat." "Yes," said his companions, "but when the sea rushes in we shall all be drowned with you."

BridgeTroll

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Re: Perseverance Mars Rover
« Reply #68 on: April 24, 2021, 07:43:40 AM »
Third flight attempt is Sunday...
https://mars.nasa.gov/technology/helicopter/status/295/we-are-prepping-for-ingenuitys-third-flight-test/

First color photo from second flight...



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This is the first color image of the Martian surface taken by an aerial vehicle while it was aloft. The Ingenuity Mars Helicopter captured it with its color camera during its second successful flight test on April 22, 2021. At the time this image, Ingenuity was 17 feet (5.2 meters) above the surface and pitching (moving the camera’s field of view upward) so the helicopter could begin its 7-foot (2-meter) translation to the west – away from the rover. The image, as well as the inset showing a closeup of a portion of the tracks the Perseverance Mars rover and Mars surface features, demonstrates the utility of scouting Martian terrain from an aerial perspective.

The winding parallel discolorations in the surface reveal the tread of the six-wheeled rover. Perseverance itself is located top center, just out frame. “Wright Brothers Field” is in the vicinity of the helicopter’s shadow, bottom center, with the actual point of takeoff of the helicopter just below the image. A portion of the landing pads on two of the helicopter’s four landing legs can be seen in on the left and right sides of the image, and a small portion of the horizon can be seen at the upper right and left corners.

Mounted in the helicopter’s fuselage and pointed approximately 22 degree below the horizon, Ingenuity’s high-resolution color camera contains a 4208-by-3120-pixel sensor. 

In a boat at sea one of the men began to bore a hole in the bottom of the boat. On being remonstrating with, he answered, "I am only boring under my own seat." "Yes," said his companions, "but when the sea rushes in we shall all be drowned with you."

BridgeTroll

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Re: Perseverance Mars Rover
« Reply #69 on: April 26, 2021, 07:30:37 AM »
Third flight attempt is a huge success... yawn...
In a boat at sea one of the men began to bore a hole in the bottom of the boat. On being remonstrating with, he answered, "I am only boring under my own seat." "Yes," said his companions, "but when the sea rushes in we shall all be drowned with you."

BridgeTroll

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Re: Perseverance Mars Rover
« Reply #70 on: April 28, 2021, 08:33:19 AM »
First ever mars rover photographed from the air...  ( upper left )



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NASA's Mars helicopter Ingenuity captured this photo of the Perseverance rover and its tracks from the air on April 25, 2021. (This photo has been cropped so that the rover is more clearly visible.) (Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech)
In a boat at sea one of the men began to bore a hole in the bottom of the boat. On being remonstrating with, he answered, "I am only boring under my own seat." "Yes," said his companions, "but when the sea rushes in we shall all be drowned with you."

BridgeTroll

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Re: Perseverance Mars Rover
« Reply #71 on: May 02, 2021, 07:39:35 AM »
Wow! The Ingenuity demo has been so successful they are extending its life into the operational supporting Perseverance as a scout...  8)

https://mars.nasa.gov/news/8936/nasas-ingenuity-helicopter-to-begin-new-demonstration-phase/

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NASA’s Ingenuity Mars Helicopter has a new mission. Having proven that powered, controlled flight is possible on the Red Planet, the Ingenuity experiment will soon embark on a new operations demonstration phase, exploring how aerial scouting and other functions could benefit future exploration of Mars and other worlds.

This new phase will begin after the helicopter completes its next two flights. The decision to add an operations demonstration is a result of the Perseverance rover being ahead of schedule with the thorough checkout of all vehicle systems since its Feb 18 landing, and its science team choosing a nearby patch of crater bed for its first detailed explorations. With the Mars Helicopter’s energy, telecommunications, and in-flight navigation systems performing beyond expectation, an opportunity arose to allow the helicopter to continue exploring its capabilities with an operations demonstration, without significantly impacting rover scheduling.

“The Ingenuity technology demonstration has been a resounding success,” said Thomas Zurbuchen, associate administrator for NASA’s Science Mission Directorate. “Since Ingenuity remains in excellent health, we plan to use it to benefit future aerial platforms while prioritizing and moving forward with the Perseverance rover team’s near-term science goals.”

 The operations demonstration will begin in about two weeks with the helicopter’s sixth flight. Until then, Ingenuity will be in a transitional phase that includes its fourth and fifth forays into Mars’ crimson skies. Flight four will send the rotorcraft about 436 feet (133 meters) south to collect aerial imagery of a potential new landing zone before returning to land at Wright Brothers Field, the name for the Martian airfield on which Ingenuity’s first flight took place. This 873-foot (266-meter) roundtrip effort would surpass the range, speed, and duration marks achieved on the third flight. Ingenuity was programmed to execute a fourth flight Friday, with a takeoff to take place at 10:46 a.m. EDT (7:46 a.m. PDT, 12:30 p.m. local Mars time) and first data to be returned at 1:39 p.m. EDT (10:39 a.m. PDT). The fifth flight would send Ingenuity on a one-way mission, landing at the new site. If Ingenuity remains healthy after those flights, the next phase can begin.

Change of Course

Ingenuity’s transition from conducting a technology demonstration to an operations demonstration brings with it a new flight envelope. Along with those one-way flights, there will be more precision maneuvering, greater use of its aerial-observation capabilities, and more risk overall.

The change also means Ingenuity will require less support from the Perseverance rover team, which is looking ahead for targets to take rock and sediment samples in search of ancient microscopic life. On April 26 – the mission’s 66th sol, or Martian day – Perseverance drove 33 feet (10 meters) with the goal to identify targets.

“With the short drive, we have already begun our move south toward a location the science team believes is worthy of investigation and our first sampling,” said Ken Farley, project scientist for the Perseverance rover from Caltech in Pasadena, California. “We’ll spend the next couple of hundred sols executing our first science campaign looking for interesting rock outcrop along this 2-kilometer (1.24-mile) patch of crater floor before likely heading north and then west toward Jezero Crater’s fossil river delta.”

With short drives expected for Perseverance in the near term, Ingenuity may execute flights that land near the rover’s current location or its next anticipated parking spot. The helicopter can use these opportunities to perform aerial observations of rover science targets, potential rover routes, and inaccessible features while also capturing stereo images for digital elevation maps. The lessons learned from these efforts will provide significant benefit to future mission planners. These scouting flights are a bonus and not a requirement for Perseverance to complete its science mission.

The cadence of flights during Ingenuity’s operations demonstration phase will slow from once every few days to about once every two or three weeks, and the forays will be scheduled to avoid interfering with Perseverance’s science operations. The team will assess flight operations after 30 sols and will complete flight operations no later than the end of August. That timing will allow the rover team time to wrap up its planned science activities and prepare for solar conjunction – the period in mid-October when Mars and Earth are on opposite sides of the Sun, blocking communications.

“We have so appreciated the support provided by the Perseverance rover team during our technology demonstration phase,” said MiMi Aung, project manager of Ingenuity at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in Southern California. “Now we have a chance to pay it forward, demonstrating for future robotic and even crewed missions the benefits of having a partner nearby that can provide a different perspective – one from the sky. We are going to take this opportunity and run with it – and fly with it.”

In a boat at sea one of the men began to bore a hole in the bottom of the boat. On being remonstrating with, he answered, "I am only boring under my own seat." "Yes," said his companions, "but when the sea rushes in we shall all be drowned with you."

BridgeTroll

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Re: Perseverance Mars Rover
« Reply #72 on: May 07, 2021, 07:32:26 AM »
Ingenuity flight characteristics...

https://mars.nasa.gov/technology/helicopter/status/298/what-were-learning-about-ingenuitys-flight-control-and-aerodynamic-performance/

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Before each of Ingenuity’s test flights, we upload instructions that describe precisely what the flight should look like. But when it comes time to fly, the helicopter is on its own and relies on a set of flight control algorithms that we developed here on Earth before Ingenuity was even launched to Mars.

To develop those algorithms, we performed detailed modeling and computer simulation in order to understand how a helicopter would behave in a Martian environment.  We followed that up with testing in a massive 25-meter-tall, 7.5-meter-diameter vacuum chamber here at JPL where we replicate the Martian atmosphere. But in all of that work, we could only approximate certain aspects of the environment. Now that Ingenuity is actually flying at Mars, we can begin to assess how things stack up against expectations. Here are some key aspects of the flight control system’s performance on Mars.

Takeoff

Unlike many consumer drones, Ingenuity is not controlled by changing the rotor speeds. Instead, we control our Mars Helicopter in the same manner as full-scale terrestrial helicopters: by changing the pitch angle of the blades, which affects the airfoil “angle of attack” and thereby determines how big a “bite” the blades take out of the air. The bigger the bite, the more lift (and drag) is produced. Like a traditional helicopter, we can change the pitch angle in two ways: by using “collective control,” which changes the blade pitch uniformly over the entire rotation of the blade, and by using “cyclic control,” which pitches the blade up on one side of the vehicle and down on the other.

When Ingenuity takes off, the rotor is already spinning at the setpoint speed of 2,537 rpm. We take off with a sudden increase in collective control on both rotors, which causes the vehicle to “boost” off the ground. During this initial takeoff phase, we limit the control system to respond only to angular rates (how quickly the helicopter rotates or tilts). The reason for this is that we don’t want the control system to be fighting against the ground, possibly resulting in undefined behavior.

The initial takeoff phase lasts for only a split second; once the helicopter has climbed a mere 5 centimeters, the system asserts full control over the helicopter’s position, velocity, and attitude. At this point we’re accelerating toward a vertical climb rate of 1 meter per second.

To estimate our movements during flight, we use a set of sensors that include a laser rangefinder (for measuring altitude) and a camera. We don’t use those sensors until we reach 1 meter altitude out of concern that they might be obscured by dust near the ground. Instead, we initially rely only on an inertial measurement unit (IMU) that measures accelerations and angular rates, and we integrate those measurements to estimate our movements. This is a type of “dead reckoning” navigation – comparable to measuring how far you’ve walked by counting your steps. It’s not very accurate in the long run, but because Ingenuity takes only a couple of seconds to reach 1 meter, we can make it work.

Ingenuity's Rotor Power During Flight Two

Ingenuity’s rotor power during Flight Two. Credits: NASA/JPL-Caltech. Download image ›
One of the things we were curious about is how “confidently” Ingenuity would boost off the ground and reach that first threshold of 5 cm. Data from the first three flights shows that portion of the climb took about 0.25 seconds, which is very much in line with expectations and indicates that Ingenuity had no issue producing enough thrust on takeoff. During this initial boost, we expected to see a spike in the power required by the rotor system, and that is indeed what we observed. For example, the spike in Flight Two was about 310 watts (W) – well below the maximum capacity of our batteries, which can tolerate spikes as high as 510 W.
Ingenuity Flight Two

Ingenuity Flight Two: A picture from the navigation camera aboard Ingenuity captured the helicopter on takeoff during Flight Two, showing little sign of dust. Credits: NASA/JPL-Caltech. Download image ›
After takeoff, Ingenuity took about 2 seconds to reach the 1-meter altitude where it could start using its full suite of sensors. That being said, while we did see some faint dust in the images taken by the Perseverance rover (parked nearby) on takeoff, there was no indication flying dust or sand obscured the altimeter or camera, so our design appears to have erred on the cautious side in this regard (which is a good thing).
The moment the helicopter’s legs leave the ground, its motion starts to become affected by wind. These winds can cause the vehicle to momentarily roll (side to side) or pitch (forward or backward) on takeoff, until it has time to catch and correct itself. We were prepared for some significant roll/pitch angles on takeoff if winds were high at the ground level, but in Ingenuity’s three takeoffs so far, they have been limited to a couple of degrees only, making for nice, vertical takeoffs.

Hover

Ingenuity's Horizontal Position During Flight One Hover

Ingenuity’s horizontal position relative to start during Flight One hover. Credits: NASA/JPL-Caltech. Download image ›
During hover phases of flight, we are attempting to maintain a constant altitude, heading, and position. In evaluating how well we are managing to achieve that, we are forced, for the most part, to rely on Ingenuity’s own estimates of what it was doing, as we have limited data establishing “ground truth.” Those estimates are subject to errors in navigation that will be covered in a separate post. But the steadiness of these estimates tells us a lot about how tightly the controller is able to hold the desired values.
The data shows that we hold our altitude extremely well in hover, to within approximately 1 cm. We also hold the heading (which way we point) to within less than 1.5 degrees. For horizontal position, we’ve seen variations up to approximately 25 cm. Such variations are expected as the result of wind gusts.

So, what has the wind been like during our flights? Fortunately for us, the Perseverance rover carries the MEDA weather station. For Flight One, we have measurements from MEDA indicating winds of 4-6 meters per second from the east and southeast during most of the flight, gusting to 8 meters per second. Keep in mind that those measurements are made 1.5 meters above ground level, and the tendency is for winds to increase as you go from ground level up. We also have atmospheric density measurements at the time of Flight One, showing 0.0165 kilograms per cubic meter, or about 1.3% of Earth’s density at sea level. Using this information, we can assess the system’s performance in another important respect – namely, the control effort required to fly.

Ingenuity's Collective Control During Flight One

Ingenuity’s collective control during Flight One. Credits: NASA/JPL-Caltech. Download image ›
For the collective control (remember, that is the one that changes rotor blade pitch angle uniformly to affect helicopter’s thrust), we would like to see hover values roughly consistent with prior expectations. During Flight One, we hovered with around 9.2 degrees collective on the lower rotor and 8.2-degree collective on the upper (that’s the angle of the blade’s “chord line” – an imaginary line drawn from the leading edge to the trailing edge of the rotor blade – at ¾ of the rotor radius). Those values are 0.7-0.8 degrees lower than the trim values we anticipated (9.0 degree on the upper rotor and 9.9 degree on the lower rotor). But those trim values were tuned based on tests without wind at a somewhat different density/rotor speed combination, so this difference is not unexpected. Another indication that we are within our aerodynamic comfort zone is the electrical rotor power of around 210 W in hover, which is also right in the vicinity of what was expected. Taken together, the results indicate that we have good margin against “aerodynamic stall,” which is when the blade airfoil’s angle relative to the surrounding airflow is increased beyond the point where it can produce further increases in lift.
Ingenuity's Lower Cyclic Control on Flight One

Ingenuity’s lower cyclic control on Flight One. Similar cyclic controls applied on the upper rotor. Credits: NASA/JPL-Caltech. Download image ›
We also evaluate the cyclic control, which is used to create roll and pitch moments on the vehicle. We have seen relatively steady values in hover, generally of magnitude less than 3 degrees, which leaves ample margin against the upper limit of 10 degrees. The cyclic control inputs tell us a fair amount about the wind that the vehicle has to fight against. For example, for Flight One the cyclic control is consistent with winds from the east and southeast, which is in alignment with MEDA observations. The cyclic control effort also increases with altitude, which indicates that winds are getting higher further from the ground.
Landing

Landing is a particularly challenging part of any flight. Ingenuity lands by flying directly toward the ground and detecting when touchdown happens, but a number of events occur in rapid succession leading to touchdown. First, a steady descent rate of 1 meter per second is established. Then, once the vehicle estimates that the legs are within 1 meter of the ground, the algorithms stop using the navigation camera and altimeter for estimation, relying on the IMU in the same way as on takeoff. As with takeoff, this avoids dust obscuration, but it also serves another purpose -- by relying only on the IMU, we expect to have a very smooth and continuous estimate of our vertical velocity, which is important in order to avoid detecting touchdown prematurely.

About half a second after the switch to IMU-only, when the legs are estimated to be within 0.5 meters of the ground, the touchdown detection is armed. Ingenuity will now consider touchdown to have occurred as soon as the descent velocity drops by 25 centimeters per second or more. Once Ingenuity meets the ground, that drop in descent velocity happens rapidly. At that point, the flight control system stops trying to control the motion of the helicopter and commands the collective control to the lowest possible blade pitch in order to produce close to zero thrust. The system then waits 3 seconds to ensure the helicopter has settled on the ground before spinning down the rotors.

People have asked why we contact the ground at the relatively high speed of 1 meter per second. There are multiple reasons for this. First, it reduces the dead-reckoning time that we need to spend without using the camera and altimeter; second, it reduces the time spent in “ground effect,” where the vehicle dynamics are less well-characterized; and third, it makes it easier to detect that we’ve touched down (because the velocity change is clearly sufficient for detection). What makes this strategy possible is the landing gear design which helps prevent the vehicle from bouncing on landing.

Ingenuity's Estimate of Vertical Velocity During Flight Two

Ingenuity’s estimate of vertical velocity during Flight Two. Credits: NASA/JPL-Caltech. Download image ›
Any touchdown detection algorithm of this kind has to strike a balance between two potential pitfalls: (1) detecting touchdown too early (thereby dropping to the ground from the air) and (2) not detecting touchdown soon enough (which would cause the helicopter to keep trying to fly after coming in contact with the ground). Data from Ingenuity’s flights on Mars show that we were not in danger of either of these scenarios. During descent, Ingenuity has maintained its vertical velocity to within approximately 4 cm per second, and it has detected the necessary 25 cm per second drop within approximately 30 milliseconds of touchdown.
As we continue with our flights on Mars, we will keep digging deeper into the data to understand the various subtleties that may exist and would be useful in the design of future aerial explorers. But what we can already say is: Ingenuity has met or exceeded our flight performance expectations. 
In a boat at sea one of the men began to bore a hole in the bottom of the boat. On being remonstrating with, he answered, "I am only boring under my own seat." "Yes," said his companions, "but when the sea rushes in we shall all be drowned with you."

BridgeTroll

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Re: Perseverance Mars Rover
« Reply #73 on: May 09, 2021, 08:07:43 AM »
NASA’s Ingenuity Mars Helicopter completed its fifth flight on the Red Planet today with its first one-way journey from Wright Brothers Field to an airfield 423 feet (129 meters) to the south. After arrival above its new airfield, Ingenuity climbed to an altitude record of 33 feet (10 meters) and captured high-resolution color images of its new neighborhood before touching down...

https://mars.nasa.gov/news/8942/nasas-ingenuity-mars-helicopter-completes-first-one-way-trip/
In a boat at sea one of the men began to bore a hole in the bottom of the boat. On being remonstrating with, he answered, "I am only boring under my own seat." "Yes," said his companions, "but when the sea rushes in we shall all be drowned with you."

Tacachale

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Re: Perseverance Mars Rover
« Reply #74 on: May 09, 2021, 08:55:41 AM »
Ok, that’s rad.
Do you believe that when the blue jay or another bird sings and the body is trembling, that is a signal that people are coming or something important is about to happen?