Journalist Report – January 7th

MDRS Crew 202, Journalist Report

Sol 9 – 01/07/2018

Name the space movie (or show) given the following quote. Answer at the end of the Report:

Astronauts? You mean, sit on top of a rocket and launched into space? Sounds dangerous; when do we go?

As we catapult into our second week on Mars, the crew cannot believe how fast the days have flown by! How is it possible that our time is almost over here on the Red Planet? It seems like yesterday we had just arrived as a fresh, wide eyed and bushy tailed crew. In a mere week, we are old veterans, working through the routine, a family of determined Martians still bent on completing our ambitious mission goals. Making sure every day counts towards our research and our life as a Crew.

It is at this approximate half way point that we reflect on our key simulation question: Would this be done on Mars?

Mars is approximately one tenth the mass of Earth and one third the gravity. Unfortunately, science has not found a way to simulate different celestial body gravities for long durations of time. Get on it science. It takes from 6 to 8 months to travel to Mars from Earth when Mars is near its closest point to Earth (~55 million km away) which occurs every two years. Imagine how Mark Watney felt while waiting for his Crew to make the journey all the way back to Earth and circle back around to rescue him from Mars! We are very thankful to have more than potatoes in our pantry. This equates to a maximum of a 22 minute delay in communication one way, 44 minutes round trip to send a message and receive a response. This will force future Martians to be heavily independent when it comes to all aspects of their life including habitat maintenance, research, and emergency procedures. Here on Mars Desert Research Station, we are given a two hour communication window with our “CapCom”, with whom we transmit reports about the state of our campus, extra-vehicular activity requests, and summaries of our research progress. This is all performed through email and is received spontaneously during these two hours. Not quite like Mars, but we do our best to simulate the communication by having limited internet (~500 MB per day) and transmitting text messages similar to those that would be used on Mars. Mars is desolate, isolated, and magnificent. Check, check, and check. While we cannot simulate the gravity, and the communication isn’t a perfect fidelity, we feel we have truly experienced as close to on Mars as we could achieve in our 2 week mission and could not be more excited about what our last week holds.

While confined in a small space with six people, in a sitcom-like environment, there are several lifestyle debates that have risen from the crew. Two of which we would like to invite our fellow Earthlings to weigh in on: Which way does the toilet paper hang? What is defined as a nap? These seem fairly trivial – It depends on the person. No. Not in this crew. These have been heated topics for several days and we are determined to debate it until we perish and turn to dust with our gravestones eternally making our arguments.

On the toilet paper front, everyone is an over the roll hanger expect our Crew Engineer. She prefers an under orientation… which is wrong. This has turned into a war of flipping the toiler paper back and forth in the small, motorhome sized bathroom for the duration of our mission.

Naps are common on Mars because it is exhausting being a Martian! Carrying 20 lbs backpacks on 2-3 hour extra-vehicular activities typically leads to crashing on the couches in the living area to recharge before continuing the research projects or preparing to cook dinner. Our Crew Engineer has been known to take 2-3 hour naps after strenuous activity. Our Executive Officer feels this is far too long to be defined as a “nap” and considers this “falling asleep”. The Commander has sided with the Executive Officer. The Geologist and Journalist are on the side of the Crew Engineer, defining naps as sleeping during the day for any duration of time. Our Health & Safety Officer is usually asleep during these debates.

We are in a stale mate on both fronts, and would like to hear Earth’s opinion. Should future Martians place their toilet paper over or under? How should naps be defined in the Martian schedule?

Movie (or Show) Answer: The Right Stuff

Operations Report – January 7th

Crew 202 Operations Report 07-JAN-2019

SOL: 9

Name of person filing report: Kasey Hilton

Non-nominal systems: Nothing to report

Notes on non-nominal systems: Nothing to report

Generator (hours run): 19hr 37min; Turned on last night (06Jan2019) at 13:24; Turned off this morning (07Jan2019) at 9:01; Turned on tonight (07Jan2019) at 16:26

Solar SOC – Turned on (06Jan2019) 72%; Turned off (07Jan2019) 100%; Turned on (07Jan2019) 79%

Diesel Reading – 70%

Propane Reading – 41%

Ethanol Free Gasoline – Not in use

Water (auxiliary tank) – Not in use

Water (static tank) – About 60%; 320 gallons

Auxiliary to Static tank transfer – No

Gallons transferred: Not applicable

Water in GreenHab – About 65%; 200 gallons

Water (loft) – At level marker 12

Static to Loft Pump used – Yes; At 19:20 to refill tank

Water Meter: 01398787

Toilet tank emptied: Yes

Deimos rover used: No, still not functional

Hours: Not applicable

Beginning charge: Not applicable

Ending charge: Not applicable

Currently charging: Not applicable

Sojourner rover used: ASSIGNED TO DIRECTOR

Hours: Not applicable

Beginning charge: Not applicable

Ending charge: Not applicable

Currently charging: Not applicable

Spirit rover used: Yes

Hours: 66.2

Beginning charge: 100%

Ending charge: 57%

Currently charging: Yes

Opportunity rover used: No

Hours: 45.4

Beginning charge: 100%

Ending charge: 100%

Currently charging: Yes

Curiosity rover used: Yes

Hours: 64.5

Beginning charge: 100%

Ending charge: 69%

Currently charging: Yes

Notes on rovers: Brake fluid in Opportunity was replaced but the brakes are still not functioning properly

ATV’s Used: None (Honda, 300, 350.1, 350.2, 350.3)

Reason for use: Not applicable

Oil Added? No

ATV Fuel Used: None

# Hours the ATVs were Used today: None

Notes on ATVs: All ATVs were started to prevent the batteries from freezing

HabCar used and why, where? Not used

CrewCar used and why, where? Off site

General notes and comments: Nothing to report

Summary of internet: Internet is not refreshing correctly; SystemControlCenter.com will show that we have no data left at the beginning of the day before anyone has turned electronics on or will show that we have 1GB but will be very slow

Summary of suits and radios: Battery in suit #9 was replaced because the battery had a voltage less than 12V

Summary of Hab operations: Side panel on west side of Hab is loose and waving in the wind, making a lot of noise; A bolt on the exhaust pipe on west side of Hab came loose

Summary of GreenHab operations: Nothing to report

Summary of ScienceDome operations: Hot plate in ScienceDome starts producing a burning smell once the temperature is raised above 200C

Summary of RAMM operations: Nothing to report

Summary of any observatory issues: Nothing to report

Summary of health and safety issues: Nothing to report

Questions, concerns and requests to Mission Support: We replaced 3 suit batteries in the last two days and replaced a charger last week, I think there are only two more back up batteries left and no back up chargers left in the suit supply box

EVA Report 8 – January 7th

Crew 202 EVA Report 7-Jan-2019

EVA #8

Author: Denys Bulikhov (EXO)

Purpose of EVA: Collection of geological samples and ambient radiation readings

Start time: 10:55

End time: 14:05

Narrative: EVA 8 crew took Cow Dung Road up to the Galileo Rd and then down to the Cactus Rd. Crew came back to the same spot where EVA 6 crew investigated geological samples 2 days ago. EVA 8 crew attempted to find the lost trail since the snow melted down a little. EVA 8 crew drove around 0.5 mile around the plateau looking for the trail without any success. At the farthest point crew left the rovers and walked to one of the canyons where they collected geological samples, ambient radiation readings and took photographs on the rim of the canyon. Later they again attempted to locate the trail collecting the samples on the way. Trail was not found. After Spirit rover reached 60% of charge, EVA 8 crew came back to the hab.

Destination: Cactus Rd, canyons

Coordinates: N520500, E4252000

Participants: Denys Bulikhov (EXO), Kasey Hilton (ENG), Jake Qiu (HSO)

Road(s) and routes per MDRS Map: Cow Dung Road, Galileo Rd, Cactus Rd.

Mode of travel: Driving and walking

Vehicles used: Spirit and Curiosity.

Sol Summary 9 – January 7th

Crew 202 Sol Summary Report 07-Jan-2019

Sol: 9

Summary Title: Some thoughts to home

Author’s name: Cesare Guariniello

Mission Status: Second week is proceeding according to plans, all research projects working as expected, with much data collected and some more work to do once back on Earth

Sol Activity Summary: After a cookies and movie night yesterday, strong wind caused a noisy night in the habitat, but the morning routine of stretching got all of us ready to go as usual. In the morning and early afternoon, three crew members performed a long EVA, while the crew astronomer worked in the Musk solar observatory and the crew geologist sorted and analyze the rocks collected in the last few days. The late afternoon and evening were also spent in working on research projects.

At the beginning of this week, a though begins to crawl in: we will be back on Earth and outside this habitat at the end of the week. However, there is still much more to do, and while we think of home, school, work, and ice cream, we are still Martians, ready to put our effort into the research we are doing and into the many daily activities that keep our habitat up and running.

Look Ahead Plan: Tomorrow we will have an EVA towards Skylim Rim to study and collect samples from the Mancos shale layer

Anomalies in work: None

Weather: Windy and sunny, with snow melting and muddy trails

Crew Physical Status: The expected amount of tiredness, but morning routines is helping with any soreness

EVA: The Executive Officer, Crew Engineer, and Health and Safety Officer had an EVA to Cactus Road and the Canyon area, where they collected samples for the crew geologist and measurements of radiation

Reports to be filed: Sol Summary, Operations Report, Greenhab Report, EVA report, EVA request, Astronomy Report, Journalist Report

Support Requested: None