Updated: April 21, 2021 12:14:47 pm
In a historic feat, NASA’s engineers pulled off first powered, controlled flight on another planet. The miniature Mars helicopter, Ingenuity, made history when it rose from the dusty red surface into the dangerously thin air of the planet. To celebrate the joyous occasion, Google has come up with a unique tribute on its homepage.
If netizens Google ‘Ingenuity’ or ‘Ingenuity NASA’, when the search engine directs to relevant links, a small helicopter looking similar to the Martian one appears on the left hand side top panel. As the blades keep revolving — ready for a flight — one click on it and it takes a joy ride over a simulated red terrain that appears at the bottom of the screen.
As the little chopper buzzes over the search results, the interface turns into a rusty hue, giving all a sneak peak of what our red neighbour looks like.
NASA too shared a small video how the Google tribute works. However, unlike the historic launch, the helicopter never actually lands on the ground on search engine’s interface. It just hovers back and forth in front of the results page until users click out.
— NASA (@NASA) April 19, 2021
Google also shared a GIF of the animated Ingenuity helicopter on Twitter congratulating the US space agency for its achievement. “Ten vertical feet for a helicopter, one giant leap for space exploration,” the tech giant wrote. “Congrats NASA Mars Helicopter on an amazing first flight!”
— Google (@Google) April 19, 2021
“It hitched a ride to Mars on the Perseverance rover. Once the rover reached a suitable “helipad” location, it released Ingenuity to the surface so it could perform a series of test flights over a 30-Martian-day experimental window,” NASA wrote in a statement about the flight mission.
For the first flight, Ingenuity took off, climbed to about 10 feet above the ground, hovered in the Martian air briefly completing a turn and then landing back.
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