Crew 272 EVA Report 13-01-2023
EVA # 10
Author: Arly Black
Purpose of EVA: Simple simulation of search and rescue of an incapacitated astronaut. In this case, the astronaut was the Boiler Transmission Station (BTS) located at N519600, E4251500.
Start time: 9:00 AM
End time: 10:50 AM
Narrative: Today’s EVA started off a lot earlier than the rest of them have this mission. This was the last EVA of our rotation (noooo!) and we were eager to get started and save our lost astronaut/Kshitij’s baby (and also to get back early to write our many final mission reports). After wiping the sleep from our eyes, a quick stretch, and a rushed breakfast, the EVA crew jumped into our suits, which by now we need no assistance to put on. Five minutes of space jokes (Why aren’t astronauts hungry when they get to space? Because they had a big launch!) made the airlock prebreathing pass by quickly. It was a chilly morning and when we got to our rovers, there was frost on our seats. Some of us wish we had noticed that before sitting down… Arly and Mason led the way to our destination in Spirit (and with spirit!) with Kenny and Megan following in Opportunity. We drove to the Gateway to Candor and parked, using the mound on the right side of the road to help us navigate on-foot to our destination, based on experience from the last EVA to the self-named Boiler Ledge. When we reached the top of the hill, Mason flew our search and rescue drone to see if our lost astronaut BTS (transmitter + box, not the K-Pop band) was still there. He was unable to see anything and lost connection at some point, so we continued walking towards the ledge. At a closer point about 300 ft from the ledge, Mason again attempted to spot the astronaut with the drone. He was unable to see it on the live feed but was later able to view it clearly during post-processing. Hopefully, in a real-life situation, the astronaut doesn’t mind waiting a few extra hours for rescue… Meanwhile, the other three EVA members walked towards the ledge and found the transmitter lying exactly where we expected it to be, which was surprising given the high winds and rain from a Martian storm we experienced a few days ago. Unfortunately, we found the box halfway down the cliff facing Compass Rock. While we could have scrambled down the cliff to rescue it, the crew made an executive decision to put our safety first and to leave it behind. Sometimes we astronauts must follow the pirate’s code. After all, dead men tell no tales. With that, we gathered up the transmitter booty, took some epic pictures and drone videos, left the box to its fate in Davy Jones’ locker, and sailed back to the Hab.
As a fun addition to our mission, Space Kidz India sent us some great questions from K-12 students about life on Mars and we had a great time answering a few of them while on this EVA. We discussed topics including the Martian atmosphere and why spacesuits are necessary, as well as what a Mars analog mission is and why it is important (and fun!).
And with that, we concluded another successful EVA and ended Crew 272’s final in-sim expedition. Ever. New friends, incredible views, and an experience we’ll never forget. Thank you MDRS.
“I may not have gone where I intended to go, but I think I have ended up where I intended to be” – Douglas Adams.
Destination: Ledge overlooking Compass Rock (named Boiler Ledge by Crew 272)
Coordinates (use UTM WGS 84): N519600, E4251500
Participants: Megan Rush (HSO), Mason Kuhn (Crew Engineer), Arly Black (XO/Crew Scientist), Kenny Pritchard (Crew Journalist)
Road(s) and routes per MDRS Map: Drove north along Cow Dung Road until Gateway to Candor and parked the rovers. From Gateway to Candor, walked on foot to N519600, E4251500 and retrieved the transmitter. Returned on foot to the parked rovers and drove back to the Hab along Cow Dung Road.
Mode of travel: Walking and driving