NASA's Ingenuity helicopter dropped on Mars' surface ahead of flight

Washington (AFP) – NASA’s Ingenuity mini-helicopter has been dropped on the surface of Mars in preparation for its first flight, the US space agency said. The ultra-light aircraft had been fixed to the belly of the Perseverance rover, which touched down on the Red Planet on February 18. “MarsHelicopter touchdown confirmed!” NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory tweeted Saturday. “Its 293 million mile (471 million kilometer) journey aboard @NASAPersevere ended with the final drop of 4 inches (10 centimeter) from the rover’s belly to the surface of Mars today. Next milestone? Survive the night.” A ph…

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