Journalist Report – October 25th

Journalist’s Report
Marge Lipton, Crew Journalist
Oct 25, 2018

SOL 4: Lots of many small steps before even a tiny leap

Today’s EVA’s were focused on what is still needed before a Virtual Reality training application of the MDRS can show additional terrain via drones. You wouldn’t just want to bring your equipment without doing thorough reconnaissance.

The morning EVA had Jim, James, Robert and Max headed to Candor Chasma. It was estimated to be a 3 hour trip from end to end. While data was being fed back to the Hab, it was noticed that the GPS coordinates (which were being taken for the drone based photogrammetry of terrain for the VR shoot) were not the same as the lat/long on the map in the hab. There are apparently a few different ways of taking coordinates but the videographers are sticking with the GPS readings they personally took on their survey.

Readings were also taken at regular intervals for the battery levels of the rovers, Spirit and Opportunity. Spirit had reasonable readings at the 1 hour 45 minute mark, but Opportunity, had a level of 40% leading the group to turn back. Luckily they did, because yards away from arriving at the Hab a bright red light turned on. Today’s mistake seems to be that putting Opportunity in high gear uses up more juice. So instead of a planned 3 hour EVA, at close to the 2 hour mark, Opportunity needed to be pushed back to the station. It’s a good thing it was almost home by then. The crew is discussing ways it may or may not be possible to bring an extra battery or generator on the rover for just such an emergency in the future.

Robert, Max, Shannon and Marge were on the afternoon EVA. They took Spirit and Curiosity out to the Burpee Dinosaur site. Once there, Shannon took out his drone and flew it over the area to get an idea of what would work. We also took GPS and iPhone coordinates to be used when the actual VR shooting occurs. The group got into the rovers and headed to Lith Canyon after that, but found too much tumbleweed and greenery for it to be Mars.

As for feedback on the space suits, a few us found that while they were fine when walking or sitting still, riding in the rover over some of the potholes caused the helmet to bump into chins and teeth.

Overall our mission has been a success in that it will greatly facilitate the time when the future VR operation occurs.

Sol Summary – October 25th

Crew 197 Sol Summary Report 25Oct2018

Sol 4

Summary Title:

Author’s name: James Burk

Mission Status: Mission is nominal.

Sol Activity Summary: We completed two more EVAs today. The second EVA was very successful trip to Lith Canyon where we flew a drone and took several GPS coordinate readings.

Look Ahead Plan: Tomorrow morning we end Sim, but we will squeeze in one more EVA to scout VR location Candor Chasma which we didn’t reach today.

Anomalies in work: Opportunity rover overheated during our first EVA today (EVA3).

Weather: Dry and clear.

Crew Physical Status: Everybody is great. A little sad we are ending tomorrow because we are really hitting our stride today.

EVAs: Two EVAs accomplished – EVA3 nearly reached Candor Chasma but had to turn back due to a low powered Rover, and one that successfully reached Lith Canyon with all mission objectives accomplished.

Reports to be file:
Sol Summary – James Burk
EVA Report – James Burk
EVA Request – James Burk
Operations Report – Jim Ehrhart
Daily Photos – James Burk
Picture of the Day – James Burk
Journalist Report – Marge Lipton

Support Requested: None

EVA Report Oct 24th

EVA Report

EVA Report For 22 October 2018 – EVA1

Author James Burk

Purpose of EVA:

1. Capture 360 and gimbaled camera footage of the MDRS and typical EVA


2. Test out new suits and get feedback.

3. EVA and Rover training of crew.

4. Daily engineering readings.

Destination: Pooh’s Corner

UDM27 Coordinates: 38.41 N, 110.78 W

Participants: Max Boyce (Lead), James Burk, Jim Ehrhart, Shannon Norrell.


All objectives achieved. Our 360 and gimballed footage is amazing.

Pooh’s Corner was the original destination, which was quickly achieved

in the first 15 mins of the EVA. We requested permission from Hab

Comm to requisition 2 rovers for a short drive south to Barainca

Butte. On the way, we were intercepted by the director who declined

permission for us to continue the EVA to Barainca Butte. We turned

around and returned to the Hab safely. We used rovers Opportunity and


EVA Report

EVA Report For 22 October 2018 – EVA2

Author James Burk

Purpose of EVA:

1. Acclimation of additional 4 crewmembers to EVA procedures.

2. Test out new suits and get feedback.

3. Daily engineering readings.

Destination: Pooh’s Corner

UDM27 Coordinates: 38.41 N, 110.78 W

Participants: Susan Jewell (Lead), Sacha Greer, Marge Lipton, Jim

Ehrhart, Robert M.


All objectives achieved.

We used the Spirit rover.

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