Sol 1 – The owl has landed
“The rocket stood in the cold winter morning, making summer with every breath of its mighty exhausts.”
Chapter 1 of The Martian Chronicles by Ray Bradbury
I think it is safe to say that this morning, many of us found ourselves waking up before our alarm, set at 6:30 am. Although the night was rather short, we were up and running by 6:45 to begin our routine: our daily sleep diary and surveys, weighing session and physiological measurements (body temperature, heart rate, etc.). Corentin, our Health and Safety officer, then led the first workout session of the mission as we watched the sunrise from the corner of our eyes and through the thick, narrow Hab windows.
After taking our last crew pictures in front of the habitat, we gathered inside the Hab near the airlock, and Adrien officially began the simulation by closing the airlock door without a spacesuit for the last time. The excitement was palpable: we were now on Mars, on a month-long mission, tasked with over a dozen experiments by scientists waiting for us back on Earth.
Coincidentally, the beginning of the mission was marked by our first EVA, designed for us to experience life outside the Hab and get used to the spacesuits and life support system. Quentin, the crew engineer, Alexandre, the crew astronomer, and I stepped outside into the hostile Martian environment for the first time and drove out to Marble Ritual. After a short exploration on site, Alexandre and Quentin looked to find a suitable place to install the atmosphere monitoring instruments, LOAC and Mega Ares.
While we were out on our EVA, Adrien and Alice led inventories of their workspaces, the GreenHab and Science Dome. It was then their turn, along with Corentin and our commander Jérémy, to go out on their training EVA, during which they practiced writing and drawing while wearing their spacesuits.
The rest of the afternoon was very studious due to the two EVAs, everyone worked hard to prepare their daily reports, and had a few laughs while communicating with the GreenHab. Meanwhile, Adrien harvested tomatoes to feed the crew, a perspective which lifted our already high spirits. This first Sol bodes well for the next 26!