Sol Summary – February 19th

Crew 189 Sol Summary Report 19 Feb 2018

Sol 1

Summary Title: The day of Firsts

Author: Victoria Da-Poian

Mission Status: All nominal

Sol Activity Summary: First physical training, first EVA. We started our day by the very famous physical training of the ISAE Supaero crews. After a nice morning working on our mission planning, fixing our experiments, and getting ready for our first EVA, we had a nice lunch with our first dried vegetables. After the lunch, the all crew worked on the EVA preparation to help the ones going outside and to learn the EVAs functioning. The EVA went fine and we will deploy our experiments tomorrow. Our first bread is baking.

Look Ahead Plan: Because of the wind planned for today, only one part of the crew went out for an EVA in the Hab surroundings to select a location to deploy our air sensors, MegaARES and LOAC. Tomorrow the other part of the crew will go to their first EVA to deploy our experiments.

Anomalies in work: Water leak in the Hab Lower deck, broken fans in spacesuits, water boiler broken

Weather: Windy, cold in the station

Crew Physical Status: Fine, already a bit tired from the first physical training.

EVA: First one

Reports to be file:





Greenhab Officer

Astronomer Officer


Support Requested: new water boiler (please)

Journalist Report – February 18th

Journalist report, 02/17/18 and 02/18/18: last moments on Earth

Louis had been the last to join us at Grand Junction, picked up by Gabriel, glad of his time of arrival. The mission was finally on its way! After a final brunch at the hotel, Victoria made a stock of bananas (which would be over even before we could see the Hab), it was time to leave civilization! The target: Hanksville, in the deepest paths of the Utah desert.

A journey not so comfortable at last, especially for Laurent, who carried the large MegaARES instrument that Gabriel left him. Nonetheless the road met its end, and we were getting deeper in the desert, towards the Hab. A few turns between giant red rocks later, we finally were able to see the station, among its little brothers, the laboratory, the GreenHab and the observatory. To welcome us, no previous crew was present contrary to the usual, but new stairs were being done, which will reduce falling risks and avoid injuries. It was then time for Shannon’s first briefing, completed with some advices from Attila the Peruvian, yet hard to understand because of Jack the dog, which seems to be into his teenager crisis.

Following a small cleaning session imposed by Victoria, it was now time for all of us to choose our rooms. Well, except for Gabriel, who inherited of the small bed under the celling, in order to take care of the hydraulic pump. A small rover/ATV trip later and we were taking our first meal in the station! A meal which finally revealed to be quite tasty: lyophilised ingredients are not so terrible. However, the crew started to feel really tired and everyone went to sleep to prepare the last pre-mission day!

A sleeping night which was short for Benoît and Louis, who had to bring back the location car to Grand Junction: it is an early morning for them! A few hours later, the remaining members of the crew tasted their first Martian breakfast with powdered orange juice and pancakes … powdered pancakes. The morning is used to put in place experiments which will be completed during the whole 3 weeks, and to finish some secondary tasks, like patch sewing, realized by Victoria, myself and Benoît for diverse results …

As both drivers came back from their journey and everyone filled their stomach, it was the time to take crew pictures! Despite some difficulties (one dog which repeatedly entered the field of view, and a tragic fall of the camera on the ground), photos were nonetheless satisfying. A last rover/ATV trip was organized, which proved to be quite hard due to continuous strong blowing winds and small dust storms that came with it, leading some members of the crew (especially Gabriel) to steal the look of a grandmother with his bandana.

The fatidic hour was near: while Shannon gave us her last advices, we prepared ourselves to the closing of the Hab door. Here begins 3 weeks without seeing the Sun without the helmet. As Shannon wished us good luck and left us, Gabriel finally grabbed the door handle to close the main door. After a few videos and pictures were taken by Jeremy, it was at last time to start the simulation.

6.05pm: the Hab door is closed, here begins the mission

Alexandre Martin, Crew Journalist MDRS 189.

Commander Report – February 18th

Crew 189 Commander Report 18Feb2018

Sol 0
Today began early for Benoit and I: because no crew was in the MDRS
before us to bring it back, we had to bring the rental car back to
Grand Junction. During this time, the rest of us had a bit of free
time to rest, then was trained by Dr Rupert on the Hab habits and map
use. We then had lunch together, and started the afternoon by our crew
official photo, in front of the hab. We then tried go on the ATVs but
quickly ended up in a little sand storm, so that we didn’t go very
After a last briefing more centered on simulation philosophy, came the
time to officially close the airlock. Even if it was less magical than
last year, it was still very symbolic: we are now by ourselves, and
for 3 weeks.
Everything is now slowly getting in order: everybody finds his role,
we wrote our first reports today, tested various equipment and look
forward to our first EVA, if the weather permits it! We want both to
train our new crewmembers about EVA specifications, and to find an
acceptable spot to display our experiments. As these will need to
remain on the field as long as possible, we want to make it a priority
for the beginning of the mission.
Everything is going pretty fast at the moment, but I think tomorrow
will be our last day of rush, and that after it, everybody will be
properly settled, and ready for the real business. Anyway, I see
excitement in all of us, and it is a good thing: everybody seems happy
to be here and motivated. I look forward to seeing what this crew is
going to accomplish!

Louis Mangin

Operations Report – February 18th

Crew 189 Operations Report 18Feb2018

SOL: 0

Name of person filing report: Gabriel PAYEN

Non-nominal systems: Pipe leak in low deck, water heater, two thermometers in the Greenhab.

Notes on non-nominal systems: –

Generator (hours run): 14 hours during the night (7 PM to 9 AM)

Solar— SOC % (Before generator is run at night) : 91%

Diesel – ?

Propane – 46.2 psi.

Ethanol Free Gasoline (5 Gallon containers for ATV) – 7 gallons (estimation based the total height and capacity of the container)

Water (trailer) – 0 gallons.

Water (static) – 400 gallons (estimation based the total height and capacity of the tank)

Trailer to Static Pump used – No

Water (loft) – Static to Loft Pump used – Yes

Water Meter (loft) : 0.44, measurement at 7 PM

Toilet tank emptied: No

ATV’s Used: All ATVs used except the one which doesn’t work (I forgot to check its number)

Oil Added : No

ATV Fuel Used: Gals

# Hours the ATVs were Used today: 20min

Notes on ATVs: –

Deimos rover used: Yes

Hours: 108.7

Beginning charge: ? (not checked)

Ending charge: 98%

Currently charging: No

Spirit rover used: No

Hours: 20.2

Beginning charge: –

Ending charge: –

Currently charging: Yes (Atilia may have unplugged Curiosity to plug in Spirit)

Opportunity rover used: Yes

Hours: 15.3

Beginning charge: ? (not checked)

Ending charge: 93% (100% after being charged)

Currently charging: No

Curiosity rover used: No

Hours: 12.7

Beginning charge: 100%

Ending charge: 100%

Currently charging: No

HabCar used and why, where : Not used

General notes and comments: Last checks today with Shannon, some things to fix (see Non-nominal systems). Jérémy tried to run his aerosol counter device (LOAC) in the Hab but it doesn’t work. It turns on but doesn’t begin counting. The crew will try to fix it tomorrow.

Summary of internet: –

Summary of suits and radios: All air pipes had been tested and only one doesn’t work (backpack 3 – left one). All radios had been tested and work

Summary of Hab operations: –

Summary of GreenHab operations: –

Summary of ScienceDome operations: –

Summary of RAMM operations: –

Summary of health and safety issues: –

Questions, concerns and requests to Mission Support:


The GreenHab officer would need a new thermometer.

-Pipe leaks

A bucket is beneath the pipe and receives a liquid which seems to be bad smelling water. Tape would stop the flow, but it only seems to be a temporary solution. Tomorrow I’ll try to find where the leak comes from.

-Water heater

Shannon seems to have fixed it before the very beginning of the SIM. We’ll see it when a crew member will take the first shower of the mission.


Some checks have been forgotten (beginning charge of the rovers, numbers of ATVs used…). Sorry for that, I’ll try not to do theses mistakes anymore.

GreenHab Report – February 18th

GreenHab Report


18 feb 2018

Environmental control:

Ambient with fan (high winds today)


Shade cloth on

Average temperatures:

Both thermometers are out of service

I estimated the temperature at 35°C around mid-day

Hours of supplemental light: from 8pm to 11pm

Changes to crops: none

Daily water usage for crops: around 15 gallons

Time(s) of watering for crops: 11am and 6pm


Functionality: The GreenHab heaters are working fine. Both thermometers are out of service, but around mid-day I estimated the temperature at approximately 35 °C, I turned on the fan for half an hour to keep the GreenHab cool. Because of high wind I left the door closed. Humidity was low in the morning (11am – 21 %) and rose up to 28 % during the day. I watered the existing seedlings twice (11am and 6pm) today and they are growing well.

Status: The existing seedlings in the green Hab are continuing to grow. There are a lot of tomato plants around the Hab, and some spinach, lettuce, beans, carrots and onion growing in the small pots. There are some other plants like a variety of spices and a few cucumbers. In the large rectangular pots there are a lot of salads (romaine mainly). I barely got familiar with the GreenHab today.

Planned activity: I will try to do the inventory stock of the greenhab tomorrow if I have time. I will look at the different seeds there are to choose some to plant them.

Support/supplies needed: one or two thermometers

Sol Summary – February 18th

Crew 189 Sol Summary Report 18 Feb 2018

Sol 0

Summary Title: Getting Ready

Author: Louis Mangin

Mission Status: All nominal

Sol Activity Summary: Last briefings, beginning of the simulation. We
started by a round trip to Grand Junction to get back the rental car
while the rest of the crew was settling in the hab, learned about the
surroundings and station management with Dr Rupert. Then we learned
about driving, spacesuits, and had a briefing about simulation with Dr
Rupert. We then closed the airlock at 5:50 PM before sunset.

Look Ahead Plan: Because of the wind planned for tomorrow, we changed
of plans, and will only go out for an EVA in the Hab surroundings to
select a location to deploy our air sensors, MegaARES and LOAC.

Anomalies in work: Water leak in the Hab Lower deck, broken fans in
spacesuits, water heater badly calibrated. Two greenhab thermometers
probably broken. Voltmeter not working.

Weather: Very windy, hard to see and to travel without space suits.

Crew Physical Status: Fine, already a bit tired from travel.

EVA: None

Reports to be file:
HSO checklist
Greenhab Officer

Support Requested: One or two thermometers.

Operations Report – February 17th

SOL: 7

Name of person filing report: Shannon Rupert (for Crew 189)

Non-nominal systems: Power System Control

Notes on non-nominal systems: Nothing new to report

Generator (hours run): Off at 8 am, on at evening (sorry no exact time).

Solar— 79 % SOC

Diesel – not checked %

Propane – not checked psi.

Ethanol Free Gasoline (5 Gallon containers for ATV) – not quite 10 gallons. Some were used to fill the tanks for ATV training.

Water (trailer) – 0 gallons.

Water (static) – 400 gallons

Trailer to Static Pump used – no

Water (loft) – Static to Loft Pump used – yes

Water Meter: not recorded

Toilet tank emptied: no

ATV’s Used: yes

Oil Added? no

ATV Fuel Used: not recorded Gals

# Hours the ATVs were Used today: 1

Notes on ATVs: All four ARVs were used for training and practice around the campus. Atila took one of the 350’s up Cow Dung Road for samples.

Deimos rover used: Yes


Beginning charge:

Ending charge:

Currently charging: no

Sojourner rover used: Yes


Beginning charge:

Ending charge:

Currently charging: yes

Spirit rover used: Yes


Beginning charge:

Ending charge:

Currently charging: yes

Opportunity rover used: Yes


Beginning charge:

Ending charge:

Currently charging: no

Curiosity rover used: No


Beginning charge:

Ending charge:

Currently charging: No

HabCar used and why, where? Yes, to town to pick up food and meet crew

General notes and comments: The incoming crew did an awesome job of cleaning the Hab as soon as they arrived.

Summary of internet: Nothing to report
Summary of suits and radios: Nothing to report

Summary of Hab operations: The installation of the stairs, ladders, and railings is complete. While we were going to send photos tonight, the crew would like to wait until tomorrow to send good ones.

I took a shower in the Hab today as my hot water heater is currently broken. I was shocked by the horrible experience. There seemed to be no way to stop the water from getting too hot, then too cold, over and over. I wasted a lot of water just working with the water temperature. After my shower, I turned the hot water heater temperature down to what I think is a good temperature for using the
hot water only (much cooler than the scalding hot temperature that it was on). I will test tomorrow to make sure this is working. If not, we will have to find a solution or we will just waste a crazy amount
of water.

Summary of GreenHab operations: The hydroponics system had a leak and most of the water was lost overnight. We are currently troubleshooting a solution for the project.

Summary of ScienceDome operations: We did more lab work this morning and afternoon working on the halophile research. Eight samples x3 have been plated on 10% NaCl LB.

Summary of RAM operations: Atila will be working in the RAM beginning tomorrow.

Summary of health and safety issues: Nothing to report

Questions, concerns, and requests to Mission Support: Nothing at this time

Science Report – February 16th


Hello there!

My name is Atila Meszaros and I have the honor of being the first intern of The Mars Society. I have been on MDRS for more than a month. During the first weeks (during the rotation of the Purdue crew), I researched all the literature and information necessary to start working on the Aquaponics project.

What is Aquaponics? It is a system that behaves like a small ecosystem: it combines fish, plants, and bacteria to generate processes of greater efficiency. The fish excrete ammonia, which if its accumulated becomes toxic, water with ammonia goes through biofilters, which contain nitrogen-fixing bacterias. These little ones, are responsible for the conversion of ammonia into nitrites and then nitrates, which, not only are not toxic but serve as nutrients for plants. In this way, the plants filter the water, which returns to the fish, practically new. The objective of this research is to verify if an aquaponics in a Martian Analogous Habitat is really advantageous, comparing to the common gardening methods.

I was one of the crew members of the fantastic Latin American crew 187. During my rotation, I was able to assemble almost all the equipment, while, at the same time, working with my project related to the resistance of Peruvian seeds to Martian analog soil. The seeds that I am using are quinoa and kiwicha. Both are fruits with high nutritional content, and knowing that both are powerful candidates for future Martian missions, is the goal of the project.

The crew of Supaero will be arriving tomorrow, and hopefully, the agronomic part (without fish) of the aquaponics will be working. To compensate for the lack of fish (and its residue: ammonia), external nutrients will be added. The aquaponics project is a long-term one, and to achieve all the goals, I will make a protocol guide which will serve the future Green Hab Officers so that they can be guided during the course of the project. I know it will be in very good hands.

On the other hand, the hunting of halophiles has just begun. Halophiles are beings that, not only support the high amounts of salts but, are in their optimal state. To find them, we are looking for gypsum in different areas where their presence has been previously registered. We have already defined the points of interest and I have already been trained for the hunt.

Also, I consider myself Shannon’s assistant and I try to support in everything that is necessary. One of my personal goals is to learn as much as I can from her. She is a fantastic person and above all, an incredible teacher.

In the course of these weeks, the number of science reports will increase, so check it out!

At the end of the internship, I will make a final report with all the projects we have done and the progress of all the investigations.

It is an honor to be able to give my small grain of sand to this great project that is Mars.

Ad Astra!

Atila Meszaros


¡Hola a todos!

Mi nombre es Atila Meszaros y tengo el honor de ser el primer interno de The Mars Society. Me encuentro en el MDRS desde hace más de un mes. Durante las primeras semanas (durante la rotación de la tripulación de Purdue), investigué toda la literatura e información necesaria para empezar a trabajar en el proyecto del Aquaponics.

¿Qué es el Aquaponics? Es un sistema que se comporta como un pequeño ecosistema: combina peces, plantas y bacterias para generar procesos de mayor eficiencia. Los peces excretan amoniaco, el cual al acumularse llega a ser tóxico, el agua con amoniaco pasa a través de biofiltros, los cuales contienen bacterias fijadoras de nitrógeno. Estas pequeñas son las encargadas de convertir el amoniaco en nitritos y posteriormente en nitratos, los cuales, no solo no son tóxicos, sino sirven como nutrientes para las plantas. De esta manera, las plantas filtran el agua, la cual regresa hacia los peces, prácticamente nueva. El objetivo de la investigación es comprobar si es realmente ventajoso un aquaponics en un Habitat Análogo Marciano, respecto a los métodos de jardinería comunes.

Fui uno de los tripulantes de la fantástica tripulación latinoamericana 187. Durante mi rotación, pude ensamblar casi todo el equipo, mientras trabajaba a la par en mi proyecto relacionado con la resistencia de semillas peruanas a suelo análogo marciano. Las semillas que estoy usando son de quinoa y kiwicha. Ambas son de los frutos con mayor contenido nutricional, y saber que ambas son potentes candidatas para futuras misiones marcianas, es el objetivo del proyecto.

La tripulación de Supaero estará llegando el día de mañana, y con suerte la parte agropónica (sin peces) del aquaponics estará funcionando. Para compensar la falta de peces (y su residuo: amoniaco), se añadirá nutrientes externos. El proyecto del aquaponics, es uno a largo plazo, y para conseguir todos los objetivos voy a realizar una guía protocolo la cual servirá a los futuros Green Hab Officers para que puedan guiarse durante el transcurso de la investigación. Sé que estará en muy buenas manos.

Por otro lado, la caza de los halófilos recién ha empezado. Los halófilos son seres que, no solo soportan las altas cantidades de sales, sino que, en ella, se encuentran en su estado óptimo. Para encontrarlos, estamos buscando en yeso en distintas áreas donde ya se ha registrado anteriormente su presencia. Ya hemos definido los puntos de interés y ya he sido entrenado para la cacería.

También, me considero el ayudante de Shannon y apoyo en todo lo que sea necesario. Uno de mis objetivos personales del internado es aprender todo lo que pueda de ella. Es una fantástica persona y sobre todo, una increíble maestra.

En el transcurso de estas semanas, los reportes de ciencias van a aumentar, por todo el trabajo que estaremos haciendo. ¡Échele un ojo!

Al finalizar el internado, realizaré un reporte final con todos los proyectos que hemos realizado y los avances de todas las investigaciones.

Es un honor poder dar mi pequeño grano de arena a este gran proyecto que es Marte.

Ad Astra!

Sol Summary Report – February 16th

Crew IKEA Sol Summary 16 Feb 2018

SOL 6:

Summary Title: Finally… Adventure Time

Author’s name: Atila Meszaros

Mission Status: All nominal

Sol Activity Summary:

I feel like I haven’t been in the Hab all day. The weather looked friendly and allowed us to make our first day of expedition. We spent most of the morning doing the growth mediums for our extremophiles, defining the microbiological points of interest and planning the activities for the arrival of the next crew.

The contractor already has almost the entire ladder of the lower deck made. Tomorrow they will come to finish it. It looks amazing. Tomorrow we will be sending some pics! While the guys worked, we managed to turn on Shannon’s car, apparently, it will not need a new battery. However, we shouldn’t take your eyes off and go carefully in case this event repeats. We picked up a package that contains equipment to record some footage at MDRS and we filled the aquaponics with water to have it almost ready by the time the next crew arrives. By the way, the Green Hab plants are looking amazing.

On our first day of adventure, we entered the Valley of the Stars in search of gypsum that may contain halophiles. Looking in any direction was simply spectacular. It is one of the most majestic places I’ve ever seen. We collected 5 different samples of vein, soil, and eruption. In a few days, we will be sending a Science Report with the findings of our first search.

It has been a very hectic day. But I am happy with everything we have achieved today. Now, I have to clean the Hab for the next crew and move to RAM (I’m going to be the first person to live there, I’m kind of excited).

Thanks for joining us tonight, Veronica!

How are you doing?


Look Ahead Plan: Recieve Supaero crew. I’m looking forward to meeting them!

Anomalies in work: None

Weather: Temperature: °6C

Crew Physical Status: Healthy

Reports to be filed:

Sol Summary

Operations Report

Science/Intern Report

Support Requested: None