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[b]NASA to Attempt First Controlled Flight on Mars As Soon As Monday[/b]
NASA is targeting no earlier than Monday, April 19, for the first flight of its Ingenuity Mars Helicopter at approximately 3:30 a.m. EDT (0730 GMT).
Data from the first flight will return to Earth a few hours following the autonomous flight. A livestream will begin at 6:15 a.m. EDT (1015 GMT), as the helicopter team prepares to receive the data downlink in the Space Flight Operations Facility at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL).
If the flight takes place April 19, a postflight briefing will be held at 2 p.m. EDT (1800 GMT).
The original flight date of April 11 shifted as engineers worked on preflight checks and a solution to a command sequence issue. The Perseverance rover will provide support during flight operations, taking images, collecting environmental data, and hosting the base station that enables the helicopter to communicate with mission controllers on Earth.
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