JPL gives Ingenuity helicopter a flight date and honors former engineer with spot on Mars

Today, during a press briefing on the first flight of Mars Helicopter Ingenuity, new information was revealed for the upcoming flight of Ingenuity. This first flight is currently targeting April 8th. When Perseverance first touched down, they determined that it landed right on the edge of an acceptable flight zone for Ingenuity.

Ingenuity, a NASA tech demonstration aircraft that tagged along on Perseverance’s belly for the ride to Mars, will attempt the first powered flight on another planet less than 120 years after the first flight of the Wright brothers plane. The small helicopter has an expected mission life span of about 31 Earth days so all the planned flights have to take place in a single month dubbed the “Month of Ingenuity”.

Once Perseverance has arrived at the center of the airfield and deployed Ingenuity to the surface of Mars, they will have 25 hours to move Perseverance for Ingenuity to charge its batteries. Once the batteries are charged then the teams…