Pożegnanie na Marsie. Legenda już nie poleci

Farewell on Mars. The legend will no longer fly

There are a lot of fans of Tolkien’s literature working at NASA. They chose an interesting name for the site of the last flight of the Ingenuity helicopter.

The Ingenuity helicopter accompanied the Mars rover from February 18, 2021 to January 18, 2024 and performed a total of 72 flights. NASA scientists have already come to terms with the fact that the device will not return to research on the Red Planet. They called the place where Ingenuity’s last flight ended “The Hills of Valinor”.

The image above was composed of six color-enhanced images captured by the Perseverance rover from a distance of 450 meters. A small object can be seen closer to the center. This is the Ingenuity helicopter. The newly adopted name of the area refers to the country of eternal refuge and rest, where there has never been evil. Some experts believe that it is Tolkien’s version of heaven. However, the Martian plain is so boring that Ingenuity had trouble determining its position because there was no distinctive point.

Ingenuity was the first flying device used on another planet. The helicopter was supposed to make 5 flights, but it quickly turned out to be an excellent scout for the Perseverance rover. We can be sure that subsequent NASA research facilities will also be equipped with such equipment.

Ingenuity will no longer fly

Ingenuity has a damaged propeller

Ingenuity is generally in good shape except for one detail. Its shadow can be seen in the photo above – it is a jagged propeller blade. Mechanical damage prevents proper flight. However, once Ingenuity is within Perseverance’s range, it can transmit diagnostic data for later use.

Perseverance, on the other hand, moves on alone. The rover’s priority remains to explore the planet and collect samples. If all goes well and the White House does not cut NASA’s budget, these samples will arrive on Earth in the next decade.

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