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I am now in the third week of my annual February birthday fund-raising drive. The first two weeks were good, but not record-setting.


There are still two weeks left in this campaign however. If you have been a regular reader and a fan of my work and have not yet donated or subscribed, please consider doing so. I take no ads, I keep the website clean from pop-ups and annoying demands (most of the time). Thus, I depend entirely on my readers to support me. Though this means I am sacrificing some income, it also means that I remain entirely independent from outside pressure. By depending solely on donations and subscriptions from my readers, no one can threaten me with censorship. You don't like what I write, you can simply go elsewhere.


You can support me either by giving a one-time contribution or a regular subscription. There are five ways of doing so:


1. Zelle: This is the only internet method that charges no fees. All you have to do is use the Zelle link at your internet bank and give my name and email address (zimmerman at nasw dot org). What you donate is what I get.


2. Patreon: Go to my website there and pick one of five monthly subscription amounts, or by making a one-time donation.

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5. Donate by check, payable to Robert Zimmerman and mailed to
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Ingenuity snaps picture of Perseverance during its 51st flight on Mars

Ingenuity's view on 51st flight, April 22, 2023
Click for original image.

Overview map
Click for interactive map.

On April 22, 2023 the Mars helicopter Ingenuity completed its fifty-first flight on Mars, flying 617 feet west for about 136 seconds at an altitude of about 39 feet. As has been routine for the past dozen or so flights, all these numbers were slightly higher than the flight plan, probably because the helicopter took extra time to find a good landing spot.

The panorama above, cropped, reduced, and enhanced to post here, was taken by Ingenuity about halfway through the flight. Unlike the black and white images that the helicopter takes looking straight down, this color image looks at an oblique angle of 22 degrees below the horizon. The colors are not corrected. The view looks east, looking backwards into Belva Crater. You can see Perseverance on the left, with its tracks cutting across the frame. Belva is filled with ripple dunes.

The blue dot on the overview map to the right marks Perseverance’s present position. The green dot marks Ingenuity’s take-off point, with the green line indicating the approximate flight path.

Genesis cover

On Christmas Eve 1968 three Americans became the first humans to visit another world. What they did to celebrate was unexpected and profound, and will be remembered throughout all human history. Genesis: the Story of Apollo 8, Robert Zimmerman's classic history of humanity's first journey to another world, tells that story, and it is now available as both an ebook and an audiobook, both with a foreword by Valerie Anders and a new introduction by Robert Zimmerman.

The ebook is available everywhere for $5.99 (before discount) at amazon, or direct from my ebook publisher, ebookit. If you buy it from ebookit you don't support the big tech companies and the author gets a bigger cut much sooner.

The audiobook is also available at all these vendors, and is also free with a 30-day trial membership to Audible.

"Not simply about one mission, [Genesis] is also the history of America's quest for the moon... Zimmerman has done a masterful job of tying disparate events together into a solid account of one of America's greatest human triumphs."--San Antonio Express-News


  • Ron

    Any thoughts on the ‘metallic’ rock in the bottom center of the picture? It just seems different to me.

  • Chris

    Interesting about that rock. It definitely has a metallic shininess to it and a very sharp shine on just one point. Nothing else in the view seems to have this.

    On another note, the exposure looks to be as if Perseverance has a spot or flood light. This may be an effect of the camera.

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