Sol Summary – May 4th

Crew 261 Sol Summary Report 04-05-2023

Sol: 4

Summary Title: experiencing Mars is never routine – Focus on Safety (Drill)

Author’s name: Aline Decadi, XO

Mission Status: nominal

Sol Activity Summary: Today took place 2 EVAs:
– EVA-5 with the following crew members: Aline Decadi (XO) (EVA Leader), Audrey Derobertmasure (HSO), Cecile Renaud (GreenHab Officer), Kris Davidson (Crew Journalist)
– EVA-6 with the following crew members: James Burk (Commander) (EVA Leader), Erin Kennedy (Crew Roboticist).

EVA-5 was focused on the initial Meshtastic Testing and on conducting Safety Procedures for EVA Crewmembers.
Each team member carried one Meshtastic: it worked nominally and gave consistent positioning data. This concluded this test successfully. The next tests would be focused to analyze how far we can go from the Hab with this device performing well.
The crew drove with Perseverance and Spirit rovers to explore the Pooh’s Corner, looking for traces of ancient civilizations.
Safety Drill: On our way back, I experienced a possible smell of burnt and alerted the crew and the HabCom I was feeling weak and decided to abort the EVA. The rest of the crew brought assistance on the field removing my Helmet and Backpack, coordinating with the HabCom, and coming back quickly to the Hab for Safety. The overall management of the Safety issue took around 15 minutes. The objectives of the EVA were still reached, and immediate actions were taken while facing danger. A debriefing took place once the crew was safety back to the Hab, and led to a detailed list of the encountered issues from the crew perspectives, and associated outcomes that are deeply detailed in the “EVA Report” of the Sol 4, e.g. regarding coordination & communication management. Some improvements will be also proposed for the next EVAs, e.g. bring water in the rover and fix a water bag/ protein bar on the suit to be able to assist the crew on the field. Experiencing Mars is never routine, and we plan to train for safety procedures during the rest of the mission to learn to act with more confidence: e.g. how to remove very quickly helmet/backpack in case of emergency. The backpack has been checked once coming back at the Hab : no visible sign of damage, and seems functional.

EVA-6 commenced with a thoughtful message from the Commander regarding the three reasons to go to Mars: for the Challenge, for the Science, and for the Future. This certainly gave colour to the present experiment where it could lead to in the future.
EVA-6 conducted Atmosphinder testing with the same size configuration as EVA-4 (half-sized, ~1 m diameter) in front of the Hab with repairs from EVA-4. The objectives of today’s tests focused on leveraging the excellent weather conditions, with wind speeds of 40.2 km/h and wind gusts of 77.2 km/h. The robot was able to be self-propelled by the wind gusts after an initial force assist, travelling approximately 4 meters from its starting position. This was repeated successfully 3 times.
A series of tests were conducted on the sail assembly to determine the amount of sail deflection by the wind with varying servo motor angles. The reactions of the servo motors interacting with the wind gusts were observed. By testing in these unique conditions at MDRS, this gave valuable insight into factors for developing the control system of the sail servo motors. Thank you to the Commander for assisting with the strenuous sail testing.
Final tests involved rolling the robot down a small hill outside the Hab. The robot completed all 3 runs successfully. The electronics payload was functioning separately, collecting environmental sensor data. The EVA-6 worked smoothly, and new information was learned. The success of EVA-6 was again in large part thanks to the entire crew — both on the EVA and behind the scenes!

Look Ahead Plan: We will be in Sim tomorrow: drone testing, according to mission request approval.

Anomalies in work: None.

Weather: Sunny and pleasant. Very windy day.

Crew Physical Status: Nominal.

EVA: One EVA to North West Pooh’s Corner, One EVA in the vicinity of the Hab.

Reports to be filed: HSO Report, EVA Request, EVA Report, Operations Report, Journalist Report, Pictures of the day.

Support Requested: None.

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