Journalist Report – February 21st

Crew 222 Journalist Report 21Feb2020

Author: Marie Bochard, Crew Journalist

Sol 5

Title: Discussions

Today’s EVA group went all the way up North to the White Moon. The landscape was breath-taking, and it made us want to meditate while looking at the panorama. The sea of stones in front of us was alien-like. The group sat down for a few minutes enjoying a little rest after the climb up top, and soaked in the view from up the hill. We like to take everything slow here, because nothing good comes from a rush, especially when there is a risk to be hurt. The group headed back and reached the Hab in time for lunch.

During their EVA, we baked delicious bread and prepared a rice salad. The meal was marked by a very interesting discussion between all of us, on topics as vast as ecology, politics and relationships. Nicolas is an environmental activist, and we all learned a lot about what measures need to be taken to prevent a 7°C increase by 2100. It’s hard imagining what’s going on back on Earth while living confined on Mars, because none of the issues seem to matter since we are so far away and unimpacted. But these issues do matter, since problems on Earth will prevent any further exploration of the solar system, including Mars.

Being confined here, we have to find new subjects of conversation often and there is no other source of entertainment than ourselves. We did bring books and movies, but we all prefer talking and playing card games when we have free time. It seems like we’ve known each other for years, as we are all becoming closer and closer day after day.

Valentin, the crew engineer, and myself continued working on his backpack and LCVG this afternoon. LCVG stands for Liquid Cooling and Ventilation System. It is what astronauts use to cool themselves down in their spacesuits, because in space there is no air breeze to cool the suit’s atmosphere. His backpack is similar to the one here at the station, it blows air in the helmet to prevent fogging. These two systems together mimic what marsonauts will carry in their back when they will go on EVAs. The electronics were giving us trouble, but looking at every component individually helped us solve the issue. The system is almost ready to go! We plan to test it on EVA tomorrow. Once again, I’ll keep you posted.