Technology Demonstration: NASA is Sending a Helicopter to Mars

NASA's Mars Helicopter is a technology demonstration that will travel to the planet with the Mars 2020 rover mission. It will attempt controlled flight in Mars' thin atmosphere, which may enable more ambitious missions in the future. The Mars Helicopter weighs a little under four pounds. Its fuselage is about the size of a softball, and its twin, counter-rotating blades will operate at almost 3,000 rpm - about 10 times the rate of a helicopter on Earth.