Author: Matthew Eby, GreenHab Officer
Gale force winds arrived overnight, buffeting the habitat. At 3am the mind wanders: what was the fail-safe wind level? Optimizing for mass, a safety factor, this far, but no further. The Hab swayed and creaked with the gusts until dawn arrived and the wind started to ease just a bit. Today a pair of coordinated EVAs deployed teams across the station, equipment and test samples passing back and forth through the airlock as the science dome and the EVA crews worked in tandem. The XO, Alli Taylor, and the Crew Engineer, Ashley Kowalski, kicked things off with a morning trek across the East flat to retrieve the mirror coating exposure experiment package, returning it for an interim inspection under the microscope at the Science Dome. While this inspection progressed, a second EVA was dispatched with the Commander, Kristine Ferrone, the Health and Safety Officer, Barbara Braun, and the Technology Officer, Trevor Jahn, to attempt the first drone flight. Wind levels threatened to scrub the flight, but the wind relaxed just enough at the end of the EVA window to allow the drone to take flight. Ball’s Bluff Elementary chimed in on our time-delayed STEM outreach channel, christening the drone “Vixl”. Soaring 100 feet above the station, Vixl zig-zagged above the Hab capturing data destined for the augmented reality project. Overcoming hurdles in the dome, the mirror inspection was completed in the nick of time, and the experiment package was returned to the outside environment for additional dust exposure.
The entire crew reunited by the late afternoon. The wind and the crew grew tired and quiet descended across the station. It was time for the first naps of the rotation, quiet time in the GreenHab thinning carrot seedlings, and recording our visions on the group canvas. Recovered, we gathered for a pizza party.