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NASA’s Mars helicopter spins blades for last time before launch

NASA’s Mars Helicopter and its cruise stage undergo functional testing in the airlock inside Kennedy Space Center’s Payload Hazardous Servicing Facility on March 10, 2020.
Credits: NASA/Cory Huston

NASA is making the final preparations for its Mars 2020 mission, set for launch in July.

The space agency recently reported the completion of important testing at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida, close to where the rocket and spacecraft carrying the recently named Perseverance rover will lift off in three months’ time.

The testing included the last spin of NASA’s Mars Helicopter rotor blades, which will be heading to the Red Planet attached to Perseverance. In the trial, engineers rotated the blades at 50 revolutions per minute, far slower than the approximately 2,500 revolutions per minute that the blades will make during actual deployment.

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