NASA reschedules Ingenuity helicopter’s first flight on Mars for Monday

An artists’ rendering of the Ingenuity and its parent rover Perseverance | NASA/JPL-Caltech

NASA has rescheduled the first flight of its Ingenuity Mars helicopter to April 19th at 3:30AM ET, the agency announced Saturday.

The four-pound helicopter that arrived on Mars on February 18th with its parent rover Perseverance has seen its first flight delayed a few times. It touched the surface of Mars on April 4th, and has been undergoing tests and checkouts. It survived its first night alone on Mars’ frigid surface, passing a first test of its independence from Perseverance.

The craft was scheduled to take flight April 11th, but last weekend NASA said data from a high-speed rotor test showed the test sequence ended early, as Ingenuity’s computer tried to switch from pre-flight to flight mode The date was pushed back again after…

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