Apparently the little genius helicopter, after several months on Mars and continuous efforts to fly and even break its own records, is more tired than ever and That's why it canceled its 14th flight before takeoff. Show relatively little ability to fly at higher speeds of the blades up to 2700 rpm instead of 2537 rpm.
(JPL) NASA, the mission team, has made such an adjustment for the helicopter because as the seasons on Mars change, the planet's atmosphere at the crater will decrease and flight will become more difficult.
- The genius helicopter flight on Mars gets harder and harder
In order to prepare for the fourteenth flight, the genius of September 15 (September 24) without bracing Tone from the surface of Mars performed an experiment to rotate the blades to a speed of 2800 rpm. "Everything went well so that the genius was ready to fly on September 17, but according to what NASA announced today, the flying robot was not successful during the main operation." What happened was that the genius happened, "Karas said. During a pre-flight autopsy, it detected a malfunction in the two flight control servo motors and did exactly what it should have done: cancel the flight.
Close-up view of the upper plate of the genius helicopter and
the location of the servo motors
An abnormality in the genius navigation system had already caused terrifying moments on the sixth flight. The genius helicopter has 6 servo motors, which are assigned to three rotors. These small motors adjust the pitch angle of the blades, allowing the helicopter to control its direction and position during the flight.
"But they do a great job and are very important for controlled flight." The mission team is still trying to determine the cause of this, but it may be due to the increased wear of the servo motors' gearboxes and their connections over a long period of time on Mars. And September 23 (September 30 and October 1) passed, but according to Karas, the anomalies in these experiments were not seen as before. "We have a few tools to fix this anomaly and we are optimistic that we can get over it and get back on the flight soon," he added.
Even with the fix Martian orbital anomalies will cause another flight delay of at least a few weeks. Mars is now on the opposite side of the Sun from the Earth, which causes the Sun to disrupt communication between the two planets. So NASA will stop sending orders to the genius helicopter, the persistent rover and other robots stationed on Mars by mid-October (late October).
Karas said: "Genius will not be completely useless during this
time. Helicopters with astronauts are programmed to communicate
with each other once a week, and the genius sends the basic health
information of their system to perseverance. "After the end of the
disconnection period, we receive this data on Earth and find out
how genius works on a relatively long period of inactivity on
Mars." Mars surface