EVA Report – April 02

EVA #3
Author: Arnaud de Wergifosse (Scientist)
Purpose of EVA:
The EVA will be composed of 4 crew members. Maxime and Loriane will work on Maxime’s experiment. They will use the Curiosity rover. Louis and Hippolyte will work on Louis’ experiment and they will use the Spirit rover. They will all go to the same location.
Maxime’s experiment:
Setting up the weather station for a personal experiment. I have chosen a location near the lab that could yield interesting results and that has visibility from the hab so that I can check if my weather station can withstand the harsh environment. Firstly, we will have to go to the RAM (depressurising it), take the weather mast, load it into one of the rovers and secure it using ropes. We will drive towards North Ridge and park the rover at the level of Pooh’s Corner and then go west on foot to set up the weather station, at ~200 meters maximum from the rover. After the weather station is set up and running, we further investigate the area west of Pooh’s corner to check the dust conditions and then go back to the rover and drive north, to Cowboy’s Corner, to take pictures and pick a new location for the weather station when it will be moved in 2 days. We will probably walk at max 500 meters from the Rover to check the conditions of the soil and dust.
Louis’ experiment:
After the first day of test and reconnaissance flights during SOL1. Louis’ experiment will now focus on the first tests of automatic flights with the most basic flight parameters. He decided to further explore the area at the North of the Hab (North Ridge). The drone will now take a predefined amount of pictures over the selected study areas. The goals are to evaluate the consequences of the relief and weather conditions on the variability in the captured pictures. This automated flight will be realized by using another control software than the one used during SOL1: PIX4Dcapture. This application allows to predefine a specific flight area over which the drone will take pictures at the same altitude and with a constante overlap between each picture. If this basic set of parameters is working, more customized flights will be realized, increasing the quality of future captured products.
Start time: 2:02pm
End time: 4:29pm
To perform this EVA, the crew members had to exit the station through the RAM to take Maxime’s weather station outside. The weather station mount was secured securely to the rover (Curiosity) and we drove without any issues toward Pooh’s Corner. Unfortunately, during the trip the weather station itself suffered some damages, with the loss of the wind direction indicator. Despite this setback, the weather station was set up west of Pooh’s corner, at exactly (in UTM WGS 84): 4251250,518500. The movement cameras were turned on and secured. The weather station operated smoothly, except for a message about low battery. The issue of the wind indicator and the low battery will be solved during the following EVA.
On his side, Louis had struggles with setting up his experiment. At first, the drone wouldn’t take off because of magnetic interference even though the drone was isolated on the ground. After a few minutes of troubleshooting with Hippolyte’s help, the drone was able to take off. More research needs to be done to correctly understand the met controlling problem. The drone was used to perform its first automatic flight with basic parameters. This flight proved the feasibility of the basic experiment requirements.
The crew members then headed back to the rovers parked on the side of the road near Pooh’s corner. Then, they took the direction of Cowboy corner to explore the area and take pictures and videos using the drone. Due to some map reading errors, the crew actually stopped on the side of the road near North Ridge and decided to finally climb the small hills of the area to observe the surroundings for future EVAs and to capture pictures/videos. Crew members then took their rovers back to come back to the HAB and end today’s EVA.
Destination: Pooh’s corner, North Ridge, Cowboy’s Corner
Coordinates (use UTM WGS 84):
First stop : 4251500, 518500
Second stop : 425200, 518800
Participants: Maxime Foucart (Astronomer), Louis Joseph (Engineer), Loriane Baes (Executive officer) and Hippolyte Hilgers (Green Hab officer)
Road(s) and routes per MDRS Map: Cow Dung Road 0110
Mode of travel: 2 vehicles (Curiosity and Spirit)

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