TeXtreme tow carbon fabrics and UD tapes were used extensively in the construction of NASA’s Ingenuity helicopter, which on April 30e made its fourth flight to Mars and saw its mission extended by a month.
Ingenuity achieved all of the major mission goals in its first three flights and on the fourth it was able to fly farther and faster than ever: a distance of 266 meters in less than two minutes at a top speed of 13 kilometers. per hour.
Ingenuity will now travel alongside perseverance, capturing aerial imagery that could help identify potential routes and areas of scientific interest.
TeXtreme materials, produced by Oxeon of Boras, Sweden, were used in the propeller blades, solar panel substrate and parts of the exterior of the helicopter and were chosen by the engineering team. from NASA / JPL / AeroVironment because of their ultralight weight and thinness. .
TeXtreme’s unique fiber architecture not only provides better options for weight savings and optimization of laminate thickness that is often desired in propeller blades and other UAV applications, but also plays also a major role in the suppression of microcracking and subsequent composite failure due to the so-called “thin film effect”, says its manufacturer.
Large variations in temperature result in large mechanical loads on any exposed composite structure. The climate on Mars is extreme, exposing Ingenuity’s composite parts to these high loads, but the application of TeXtreme significantly reduces the risk of microcracks appearing and results in more durable parts.
“We were honored when TeXtreme was selected for the Mars helicopter, and it has been very encouraging to follow its development over the years,” said Henrik Blycker, Co-Founder and CEO of Oxeon. “Watching the NASA Flight Team live broadcast when the data from the very first flight was broadcast was a truly historic moment in our company’s history.”