NASA Records Sounds of the Ingenuity Helicopter Flying on Mars


NASA released, on Friday (7), a recording made by the Perseverance rover in which it is possible to hear the noises generated by the rotors of the Ingenuity helicopter while it flies on Mars. It is the first time that a spacecraft records the sounds of a separate space vehicle on another planet.

Recorded during the fourth flight of Ingenuity on the Red Planet, on April 30, the audio was captured by one of the two microphones installed on the rover. It works coupled to the SuperCam laser, whose rays are fired at rocks on the Martian soil, assisting in the study of the chemical properties of these stones.

Parked 80 meters away from the takeoff and landing site, Perseverance also recorded the displacement of the small helicopter that day. The images and the audio track were brought together in the same file, in the video below, now released by NASA:

According to the American space agency, it is necessary to listen carefully to notice the sounds of the Ingenuity propeller, as the microphone also picked up some noise generated by the gusts of Mars. To make the recording easier to listen to, it was necessary to edit the audio file, cutting some frequencies.

The importance of recording

The team responsible for operating the SuperCam device’s microphone celebrated the success in recording the sounds of Ingenuity. In the simulations made by the researchers, the audio was barely captured due to the characteristics of the atmosphere of Mars, which hinder the propagation of the sound.

“This recording will be a gold mine to understand the Martian atmosphere”, commented David Mimoun, professor of planetary sciences at the Higher Institute of Aeronautics and Space in Toulouse (France), who heads the equipment control team.

The fifth Ingenuity flight on Mars is scheduled to take place this Friday. He must retrace the previous course, 129 meters away, and the miss team


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