Journalist Report – January 12th



Crew 272 Journalist Report 1-12-2023

Sol: 11

Author: Kenny Pritchard, Crew Journalist

Title: Cowboys on Mars

A balanced breakfast of coffee, cookies, and cinnamon rolls baked by Mason set us up for an efficient and exciting sol. It was kind of him to cook for us after we literally woke him up to tell him the septic tank needed flushing. Megan led us in stretches, which, as the sols go on, only seem to get harder. Adriana wrapped up the morning routine with an overview of the EVA plans.

After finishing preparations and enjoying Mason’s performance of some classic Mitch Hedberg jokes in the airlock, Arly, Adriana, Megan, and I took a brief rover ride to a location called Cowboy Corner. Yeehaw! We tied up our horses, secured our hats, kicked our spurs in the dust, and allotted upon exploring the area. The crew collected some ace-high geologic samples as we trekked around the base of a large mound. Along the way, Adriana documented paleoflow indicators in the formations we passed, which she will compare to the data collected at Kissing Camel Ridge. Unfortunately, her rock hammer broke all to pieces out of nowhere! Megan had the foresight to bring along some 3d-printed replacements, which were additively manufactured back at the Hab in a pinch. Although these plastic hammers struggled a bit to shatter harder stones, they were real handy for digging and prying soft sediment. Once we had our fill of hiking about the alien formations and taking in views of the big rock candy mountains in the distance, we burnt the breeze back to camp, where the rest of the crew was hard at work.

Kshitij roamed among different parts of the Hab today, filming outreach videos for his YouTube channel. Space outreach is important to promote interest and inspire the next generation of Martians! We’ll be filming more videos tomorrow to answer questions sent in by K-12 students. For Madelyn, this sol was defined by a final harvest and data collection of her research greens, with which Mason assisted. She meticulously measured the sprout length, leaf length, volume, and mass of hundreds of her daikon radish samples – this data can be later investigated to compare the performance of differently treated plants. After data collection was finished, the crew performed a blind taste test of both fertilized and unfertilized samples. We rated them on factors including vibrance, crispness, and even spiciness! Ultimately, the crew preferred the fertilized radishes, much to Madelyn’s relief. For dinner we’ll supplement our fresh radishes with Aloo Gobhi (a spicy vegetable dish) made by Kshitij. We lack both Aloo and Gobhi in our food stores, but we trust in our commander to come up with a good Martian solution. We’ll see what happens – tomorrow marks the last sol of our simulation!

GreenHab Report – January 12th


Crew 272 GreenHab Report 12-01-2023

GreenHab Officer: Madelyn Whitaker

Environmental control: heater

Average temperatures: 70 F

Hours of supplemental light: 4 hours

Daily water usage for crops: 5 gallons

Daily water usage for research and/or other purposes: 3 gallons

Water in Blue Tank : 221 gallons

Time(s) of watering for crops: 1000, 1800

Changes to crops: No new plantings, harvest carrots and beans

Narrative: Monitored and watered GreenHab crops. Harvested beans, carrots for a snack. Harvested experimental crops, collected all relevant experimental data

Harvest: (include which crop and mass in grams): Harvested 5g beans, 15g carrots

Support/supplies needed: N/A

EVA Report – November 25th



Crew 272 EVA Report 12-01-2023

EVA # 9

Author: Arly Black

Purpose of EVA: 1) Geologic EVA to Cowboy Corner to investigate an inverted paleochannel identified by Clarke and Stoker (2011). 2) Test of 3D printed geologic tools.

Start time: 11:00 PM

End time: 2:15 PM

Narrative: It being Sol 11, Crew 272 is now old hat at getting ready and suited up for EVAs, and we were ready and out the door in no time. Megan and Adriana led the way in Curie, while Arly and Kenny followed in Oppy. It was a gorgeous, sunny day. The crew drove north along Cow Dung Road towards Cowboy Corner, parked the rovers, and walked west. We made our way to the inverted paleochannel — or giant mound for us non-geological folks — Adriana had identified for investigation. Our first task was to test the 3D printed rock hammers Megan created back at the Hab throughout our mission. One was a lovely pale green and made of PLA material, while the other was smaller, bright purple, and made of PETG material. Both contained 20% infill, which is a characteristic that dictates material strength, structure, and weight. Both hammers proved useful for digging and prying soft sediment, but neither were very beneficial for hammering hard rock as they lacked a certain heaviness in the hammer head. Adriana preferred the smaller hammer as it felt stronger, which aligns with the material strength specs of PETG. Adriana also enjoyed how light the hammers felt in her tool belt, relative to her bulky metal hammer.

We proceeded to walk around the large mound, exploring the many boulders and features of the area. Adriana dictated lithologic descriptions to Arly and collected hand samples that contained sedimentary structures. She documented more paleo flow indicators and compared it with findings from Kissing Camel Ridge. She noted that it looks to have a very similar depositional environment to KCR in terms of the sediment and paleo flow indicators. This makes her believe that they are a conjoined fluvial system – in other words, they are part of one system that existed at the same time. Adriana also thinks she found coal in both locations which further explains the depositional environment. “The story is slowly coming together!”, she announced excitedly, as the rest of the crew nodded, pretending to understand. And with that, Professor Brown’s Mars geology course came to an end. I think I speak for the rest of the crew when I say Adriana is going to make an incredible Professor one day.

Having accomplished all we came to do, we headed back to the Hab 15 minutes early. No alien sightings today. It’s really starting to feel like Mars out there.

Destination: Cowboy Corner

Coordinates (use UTM WGS 84): N518800, E4253000

Participants: Megan Rush (HSO), Adriana Brown (Crew Geologist), Arly Black (XO/Crew Scientist), Kenny Pritchard (Crew Journalist)

Road(s) and routes per MDRS Map: Drove north along Cow Dung Road until Cowboy Corner. Parked the rovers and walked west along the inverted paleochannel (0.5 km west of Cow Dung Road).

Mode of travel: Walking and driving

Operations Report – January 12th



Crew 272 Operations Report 12-1-2023

SOL: 11

Name of person filing report: Mason Kuhn

Non-nominal systems: Oven light

Notes on non-nominal systems: No additional issues, just need a new bulb. The specifications of the light bulb type have been emailed to mission support in the Sol 10 Operations Report email chain.


Spirit rover used: No

Hours: 207.1

Beginning charge: 100%

Ending charge: 100%

Currently charging: Yes

Opportunity rover used: Yes

Hours: 111.8

Beginning charge: 100%

Ending charge: 66%

Currently charging: Yes

Curiosity rover used: Yes

Hours: 219.3

Beginning charge: 100%

Ending charge: 61%

Currently charging: Yes

Perseverance rover used: No

Hours: 253.9

Beginning charge: 100%

Ending charge: 100%

Currently charging: Yes

General notes on rovers: Curiosity and Opportunity were used on EVA. They performed nominally. The chargers were draped over the front bumper upon return to the Hab. Perseverance has been moved to the outpost temporarily per Mission Support’s notice.

Summary of Hab operations: The oven light was removed & inspected for its specifications. The oven currently has no bulb in it, but the bulb cover was put back on for electrical safety reasons. 1 shower was taken today, and several pasta dishes were made throughout the sol, so water usage was slightly above average. The crew has been aware that it has plenty of water left over, but in the Martian mindset, we have still been trying our best to conserve.

WATER USE: 26.2 gallons

Water (static tank): 154.6 gallons

Static tank pipe heater (on or off): On

Static tank heater (On or off): On

Toilet tank emptied: Yes

Summary of internet: Nominal

Summary of suits and radios: Suits 5, 8, 9, and 10 were used on the EVA. All suits performed nominally, and all are cleaned & currently charging. All radios have been charged to full, and they have been removed from the charging docks. The EVA crew had no communication issues.

Summary of GreenHab operations: Monitored and watered GreenHab crops. Collected relevant experimental data.

WATER USE: 8 gallons

Heater: On

Supplemental light: 4 hours

Harvest: 5g beans, 15g carrots

Summary of Science Dome operations: GreenHab Officer data collection and recording took place at the center Sci Dome table. Geologist’s samples were re-organized and are being stored on a side table of the Sci Dome.

Dual split: On (from approximately 8:00 pm to 8:00 am)

Summary of RAM operations: Tools from the RAM that are still in the lower deck of the Hab are a tape measure and a Multimeter. They will be returned to the RAM on sol 12 after the last measurements are taken for final reports.

Summary of any observatory issues: N/A

Summary of health and safety issues: N/A

Questions, concerns, and requests to Mission Support: N/A

Best Regards,

Mason Kuhn

Crew 272 Engineer

Sol Summary Report – January 12th



Crew 272 Sol Summary Report 12-01-2023

Sol: 11

Summary Title: The Cowboy Trip

Author’s name: Kshitij Mall

Mission Status: All nominal

Sol Activity Summary: After successfully playing Monikers, the team got a good-sol sleep and started the day energized except Crew Engineer Mason. A filled-up toilet served as the alarm clock for Mason, who was quick to act. After a brief morning exercise led by HSO Megan, the crew had a sweeter breakfast: cinnamon rolls prepared by Mason. I shared with the crew some rehydrated fruits and some cookies from Earth. After a quick briefing, the crew suited up to finally explore the Cowboy corner. The EVA crew comprised Crew Geologist Adriana, Megan, XO Arly, and Crew Journalist Kenneth and departed the Hab by 11 AM.

The EVA crew went to the Cowboy corner, walked west and collected samples at that spot. Megan tested the tools she 3D printed at the Hab and found that the smaller rock hammer was more useful for the EVAs. Adriana found that Cowboy Corner has great similarities with the Kissing Camel Ridge, and this matched with her intuition based on her previous EVA. The EVA crew was back by 2:15 PM. As per the traditions, the EVA crew completed the daily human-factors based cognitive performance tests and personal surveys for Arly and Andres. Mason also sent some important information about the oven light that needs some repairs. Our crew also received some outreach questions from Earth, which we will be answering through an offline video tomorrow.

At the Science Dome, for a change, the Greenhab Officer, Madelyn, was busy with the Great Harvest: The Martian Reaping. Madelyn collected over 700 data points regarding volume, mass, leaf length and sprout length of all the different Martian plans grown during our rotation. Kenneth and Mason helped her with the data collection as they are apparently good with rulers. I also went through the Hab and got some raw videos to share about the (amazing) MDRS facility and the grand goals of the Mars Society. Madelyn then asked us to do a survey after eating two samples: a normal micro green and a special fertilized micro green. Almost all the crew members chose the fertilized sample based on different features like color, taste, crispiness, vibrance, etc. The crew was not aware of the answer and was only disclosed about it after completing the survey. The crew indeed was surprised at the result. Dinner for tonight was an Indian dish called Aloo Gobhi (potato and cauliflower) prepared by me and assisted by Arly. We might again play Monikers card game tonight, which we have been procrastinating for several sols. Tomorrow we will retrieve (my electrical baby) the BTS from around the Gateway to Candor. Tomorrow we also launch back to Earth and end this rotation. I bet the crew members will be with mixed feelings of leaving Mars and going back to Earth, but we will aim at making the best of what we can do at Mars while we are here!

Look Ahead Plan: Conduct a geological EVA at the Cowboy corner and complete the Great Harvest at the Greenhab

Anomalies in work: None

Weather: Sunny, Calm Winds

Crew Physical Status: Good

EVA: One

Reports to be filed: Sol Summary, Operations Report, Journalist Report, EVA Report, EVA Request, Greenhab Report.

Support Requested: None

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