A selfie of the Ingenuity helicopter and the Perseverance rover (Photo: NASA)
WASHINGTON: The American space agency NASA has successfully flown a small helicopter on Mars.
The drone, called Ingenuity, was airborne for less than a minute, but NASA is celebrating what represents the first powered, controlled flight by an aircraft on another world.
Confirmation came via a satellite at Mars which relayed the chopper’s data back to Earth.
The space agency is promising more adventurous flights in the days ahead.
Ingenuity will be commanded to fly higher and further as engineers seek to test the limits of the technology.
The rotorcraft was carried to Mars in the belly of Nasa’s Perseverance Rover, which touched down in Jezero Crater on the Red Planet in February.
(With inputs from BBC)