Marsh helicopter Ingenuity encountered a problem during a flight on Saturday, NASA reports in a statement. Due to a navigational error, the helicopter flew in different directions. Nevertheless, Ingenuity was able to land safely.
It was the first time that the Mars helicopter encountered problems during a flight since it arrived on Mars. The incident occurred during the sixth test flight of the helicopter, when it flew at 10 meters altitude.
Ingenuity flies and lands using a camera that constantly takes a series of photos. One of the many pictures was not registered in Ingenuity’s navigation system. As a result, the time series was disrupted and the vessel became confused about its location. The device fluctuated back and forth and experienced high peaks in power consumption. Eventually, the Marshel helicopter could land safely at a distance of 5 meters from the landing site.
According to Havard Grip, the helicopter pilot, the built-in system that guarantees the stability of Ingenuity saved the vessel.
“Although the flight reveals a weakness in timing, the robustness of the system has also been confirmed in several ways,” says Grip.
Ingenuity was launched last year as luggage in the cargo hold of Marsrover Perseverance. The aircraft landed on Mars In February and made its first successful flight on the planet in april.