Devon island is closer to Ireland than California. We want high school students in Island to follow this story. What would it take for a student “Tiger Team” to support this team of explorers? http://www.BarbozaSpaceCenter.com
Mars 160 Crew Report (#1) | FMARS Mission
[Sunday, July 16, 2017, Devon Island] — A red bi-propeller plane is approaching a brownish hill in the High Arctic. On top of it, sits for 17 years now a tuna can-shaped habitat named the Flashline Mars Arctic Research Station (FMARS). After few low fly-bys, the plane is slowing down, landing 2.5 km from the Hab.
The station is very similar to the Mars Desert Research Station(MDRS), but with different construction so that there is a little more room inside. The upstairs layout is reversed, and the bathroom and toilet spaces are partitioned off together with a little tool room, so there is less open space downstairs. The deck seems a little lower so there is less headroom in the lower deck but more in the loft, which provides room for general storage.
The first half of the Mars 160 crew has landed. The other half of the crew will join them the day after. Landing the crew in two shots… Interesting thoughts for manned mission to Mars!
This was not an easy journey from several aspects. Due to weather and ground conditions, the crew has been stuck for 3 weeks at Resolute Bay.
My role as commander is to make sure that we use efficiently our resources. Time is the most precious of them. Despite our situation in Resolute, the crew stayed active and productive. But I cannot hide the fact that I had strong doubts about the fate of the mission. At some point, after travelling so far, you have to reach your final destination or the mission itself loses its meaning! [Alex]
As the Japanese proverb “isogaba maware” says, meaning “slow and steady wins the race”, I think waiting is always a part of a mission. At least we were closing in to FMARS. So do not lose our presence of mind, do not lose a time to prepare, do not lose a chance if it might happen, were the only things what we could do in Resolute. [Yusuke]
Resolute is a fascinating place, and serves as an analogue for what a Martian settlement of several hundred people could be like. I was able to collect a lot of data in this regard for future use. The environment is also very interesting, and we were able to use it to familiarise ourselves with conditions on Devon Island and to plan possible future expeditions to Cornwallis Island. [Jon]
Resolute Bay is a beautifully colonized Inuit hamlet, which is also called the window to the North Pole and a place with no dawn. I find an amazing resemblance between the way Resolute is colonised and the future human colonization of Mars. Staying at Resolute and waiting for the right conditions to land at FMARS was uncertain and unanticipated. The mission was getting shorter and it seemed that the science goals were going to be compromised. [Anushree]
Being delayed for so long opened up a lot of uncertainty as to how I would be able to carry out all of the research I had planned for the mission. The delay seemed to have benefits it allowed for extra time for Anastasiya to join us. [Paul]
I didn’t wait as the rest of the crew, instead I was struggling with bureaucracy of Canadian visa centre. I didn’t get my visa twice. The third time I applied with almost no hope, but as Russians say “Bog lubit troecu” (God loves the Trinity). This time it worked out and I got my “golden” visa, packed during night, hit the road next morning, had seven flights and finally saw my crew! I was extremely happy and full of joy to finally make it, to see my Martian family and to continue the work towards mission to FMARS! [Anastasiya]
FMARS… The first Martian like habitat built by The Mars Society in 2000 on the edge of the Haughton crater in Devon Island. The crater is a shallow circular depression 15 km across and 140 m deep. The air is so clear the further rim much closer. It’s the most impressive and Mars like setting of all the analogue stations. You can really imagine a Mars base on the edge of what would be a small crater on Mars. The ground is greyish brown in colour, rocky, composed of dolomite rock (brown) on the rim and the crater fill (grey) on the floor. Freeze-thaw action over the permafrost has worked the rocky ground into polygonal networks of sorted stones. There are networks within networks, the smaller polygons are 1.5 m across, the larger ones, with the largest rocks, are 4-5 m across. The landscape is undulating, a low plain cut by river valleys. Clear, gravel-bed streams fed by snow-melt flow down them. There are many relict snow patches.
Regarding living organisms, there is almost no vegetation, a little moss here and there, a few lichens, and tiny clumps of wild flowers. In wet areas you can find interesting biofilms and hypoliths. There is rare trace of animal activities. But there are fossils – corals, sponges, and nautiloids – everywhere.
Now the crew has arrived and settled. One could expect a lot of excitement and joy. But there their feelings are much more diverse and nuanced.
I feel relieved. Being able to have started my research this week and getting my monitoring equipment installed and running has made me much more relaxed and able to think more critically about the rest of the work I need to do, as well as meeting the goals of the simulation. [Paul]
When my crewmates showed me the aerial view of the habitat, I was emotional. I felt this urge to be in the habitat now. Our small habitat located on the top of the planet, totally oblivious to the rest of the world. I couldn’t stop smiling. So, how do I feel now? Obviously great… no more philosophy. [Anushree]
The feelings are diverse. Excitement to start new chapter in life at such a unique place and with my Martian family. Confusion to understand that I am here and not at MDRS. Sadness to miss crew members, who couldn’t make it. Curiosity to see the discoveries of our science research. Anticipation to get the results of our projects. [Anastasiya]
I love this place! Haughton crater is amazing. Some aspects of the station like the ladders between levels, are a source of frustration.[Jon]
Not very excited as I anticipated. I don’t know why for sure. I guess because our mission had already began when we arrived at Resolute for me. Now it is a time to take a step forward solemnly and silently. [Yusuke]
With the straining days we spent so far, I did not have too much the liberty to feel anything. For me it is mostly, stacking all the tasks, delegate and synchronize the crew to work properly and efficiently. But I have noticed that during few minutes during the day I manage to escape from my thoughts and worries. When that happens, I feel amazed to have reached a great Mars analogue on Earth. [Alex]
The Mars 160 program is two separate expeditions. The first occurred last fall at MDRS. FMARS expedition is the final chapter of the program. It will be over soon. The main goal of these expeditions is science operations. It includes what field science can be conducted on each site but also how remote and crew scientists cooperate with each other. As the mission is shortened by the delay induced by the earlier conditions, the expectations had to be reviewed in order to match the new time constraints.
For this mission, I was appointed as a scientist going to be based on Mars principally to execute the vision of scientists based on Earth. For me, this association has been the most fascinating part of my sojourn for Mars 160 expeditions. Considering the extreme remoteness and less resource, I expect this mission to be more productive for testing the asynchronous communication and coordination between the remote science team and me to conduct field science.
I believe FMARS is a vantage point to access various Martian polar regions features at one place: an ancient impact crater which once contained lake analogous to the Gale crater on Mars, geological features of hydrothermal origin, periglacial patterned ground, impact-induced hydrothermal evaporite deposits, the day-night cycle, and total isolation.
The delay in the mission, would of course narrow the chances of scouting the area, thereby, would restrict sampling events. However, with appropriate planning and coordination among the crew, I expect to meet the goals set by our remote science team.[Anushree]
I will not be able to get the data I originally wanted on the crater floor. This is only partly due to the delay and mostly related to prevailing mud along ATV routes, but this is a factor out of our control. As a result of the condensed time and modified research goals, I will have more to do and fewer EVA’s to do them.
My research is focused on cataloguing the different types of patterned ground around Haughton Crater and gaining a better understanding of how these permafrost features form and evolve over time. Similar features have been observed on Mars, so understanding how they form on Earth can yield insights into how they form elsewhere in the solar system. [Paul]
My expectations of the mission are that we will have a safe and enjoyable time that will colour our reflections for the rest of our lives. I expect us to all be able to collect material we can use in different areas later on, be in media stories, published research, lectures, or ideas for design work on Mars technology and architecture.
I will be focusing on three areas: 1) studying facies in the limestones of the Silurian Allen Bay Formation that the Haughton Impact structure has been excavated into, 2) classifying and mapping, regolith landforms of a polar Mars analogue, and 3) collecting operation data on daily scheduling, time management, EVA capabilities during a simulated Mars surface stay. Only the third will be significantly impacted by having a shorter period to collect data. However, when used in conjunction with the data from the first phase of the expedition in Utah I expect to have more than enough to draw useful conclusions. [Jon]
I expect to return safe and sound, live peacefully, enjoy this moment with my crew mate. I am looking forward to be a dependable crew as my ideal role on Antarctica (JARE), who can take care of a thankless job.
Arctic is not as easy as we suppose it to be. It is inevitable that the field science projects take the priority over other projects such as mine. That’s alright. So, I either cross out some of my personal projects or find a way to collaborate with other projects.
I will focus on 3D archives. Basically this idea is coming from architectural 3 dimensional aspects. People have to decipher Mars appearances by 2D information. How we could convert 3D Mars data into 2D transportable data by easy, simple, quick, convenient, inexpensive ways in terms of a human centred design to support field research specialists on Mars? I will try few things such as anaglyph 3D picture of some field site or 360 degrees high resolution photo. [Yusuke]
As I always say, set the high goals, because they will help you to grow in many ways! The experience of first Mars 160 expedition helped me to grow as a person, gain diverse skills and showed new view of our controversial world. From FMARS I expect not the less, the harsh environment and even more limited resources than at MDRS will require new levels of creativity, stamina and hard work.
I’m coordinator of psychological studies by Institute of Biomedical Problems (Russia) and the more time crew spends in extreme environment and isolation, the more valuable data IBMP can receive. Fortunately, these tests do not interact with the field science activities, so my work is in lesser extent affected than theirs by the delay. [Anastasiya]
The earlier delay is unfortunate. Mars analogue field science is something very particular: a scientist on Earth would take samples and bring them back to the Lab for further analysis while on Mars you would probably conduct preliminary analysis of the samples before deciding which one to bring back to Earth and which one to dispose of. The new time constraints will not allow our crew scientists to conduct too much analysis, if any. They will have to rely on their eye ball judgment and intuition. Something a robot could not do. The outcome of this expedition will be interesting in that regard.
To support the science activities, I will not conduct my technological project about the spacesuit user interface. Also, I cannot afford that one of the scientists (Anushree, Jon or Paul) take the role of the shotgun carrier (bear protection) during EVAs. So I will assume most of this role during our stay at FMARS.
This crew is very dedicated to the mission and I am very confident that our limited time here will be spent wisely. I also like to think that from our misfortune delay, lessons will be learnt and used for future crews. [Alex]
A full report about the Mars 160 mission at FMARS will be presented at the 20th Annual International Mars Society Convention, scheduled for September 7-10, 2017 at the University of California Irvine. For more details, please visit our web site: http://www.marssociety.org/conventions/2017.
Comment: Bob Barboza will be presenting about “Mars Tiger Teams” at the Mars Society Convention, September 7-10, 2017.
The 20th Annual International Mars Society Convention
University of California, Irvine
A311 Student Center
Irvine, CA 92697
September 7 – 10, 2017
The four-day International Mars Society Convention brings together leading scientists, engineers, aerospace industry representatives, government policymakers and journalists to talk about the latest scientific discoveries, technological advances and political-economic developments that could help pave the way for a human mission to the planet Mars.
Report: 2 in 3 Parents Say Classroom Tech Is Key to Student Futures
Tech leaders say motivating teachers is the biggest hurdle, according to a new report.
Two-thirds of parents report that effective classroom technology use provides an opportunity for their children to develop college and career skills, according to a new report from Project Tomorrow and Blackboard. Meanwhile, motivating teachers to change their instructional practices is the biggest challenge to adopting digital learning or deploying new technology, according to school and district technology leaders.
The report, “Trends in Digital Learning: Building Teachers’ Capacity and Competency to Create New Learning Experiences for students,” is based on a survey of more than 38,000 teachers, 29,000 parents and 4,500 administrators.
Other key findings of the report include:
- 68 percent of teachers in blended classrooms said that technology helps them to better differentiate instruction;
- Responding teachers said they need planning time, access to technology, tech support, professional development and reliable and high quality internet connectivity to effectively integrate digital content and tools;
- 56 percent of parents reported that they are concerned their children will not learn the right skills in school for success in college or their careers;
- Parents were most likely, at 86 percent, to say that critical thinking and problem solving are important skills for their child’s future;
- Other skills commonly cited by parents include the ability to work with diverse groups, creativity, teamwork and collaboration and leadership;
- Technology, cited by 70 percent of parents surveyed, came in fifth;
- 51 percent of principals and 67 percent of technology leaders surveyed said their greatest challenge in expanding technology use or implementing digital learning is motivating teachers to change their traditional practices;
- 36 percent of teachers reported using online curriculum, up from 22 percent in 2013;
- 59 percent of teachers said they want to use digital resources that they can modify for classroom use, but librarians said that 62 percent of their teachers use digital content without modifying it at all;
- Teachers use technology to support professional tasks in the classroom, though they are more likely to do so in a way that does not change classroom practice. For example, 66 percent of teachers surveyed said they have watched a video to learn how to do something, but only 33 percent reported using digital curriculum with their students;
- District administrators and principals were more likely, at 71 percent and 60 percent, respectively, to say that the effective use of technology is extremely important for student success than teachers, at just 43 percent;
- Teachers in blended or virtual classrooms were more likely to rate technology as important in myriad ways, from improved differentiation to better self-directed professional development to developing student creativity; and
- 37 percent of teachers surveyed said they had taken an online class for professional development, up from 19 percent in 2014.
“More and more education leaders realize that the sustainable success of any transformative initiative in their school is dependent upon the leadership of the teacher in the classroom,” said Julie Evans, CEO of Project Tomorrow, in a prepared statement. “This report shows that digital tools, content and resources can help elevate the competencies of teachers and also provide evidence of the value technology can bring to students’ learning experiences and outcomes.”
The full report is available at bbbb.blackboard.com.
Joshua Bolkan is contributing editor for Campus Technology, THE Journal and STEAM Universe. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Within the next few decades, humans could be leaving their footprints on the Red Planet! That’s the plan, as NASA continues to prepare to expand human exploration in the solar system. Astronauts currently work as scientists on the International Space Station — the test bed for cutting-edge research and technologies that will enable human and robotic exploration of destinations beyond the station’s low-Earth orbit. The Orion spacecraft atop the Space Launch System (SLS) rocket will carry humans farther into space then they have gone before — beyond the moon and eventually to Mars.
NASA’s commercial partners are transporting cargo — and soon, crew — to the International Space Station. The need for crew members on these spacecraft and missions will continue. At times, NASA will put out a call for new astronauts.
A Very Brief History of Astronaut Selection
The military selected the first astronauts in 1959. They had to have flight experience in jet aircraft and a background in engineering. And they had to be shorter than 5 feet 11 inches – to fit in the Mercury spacecraft.
But, in addition to flight and engineering expertise, space exploration requires scientific knowledge and the ability to apply it. So, in 1964, NASA began searching for scientists to be astronauts. Back then, one qualification for scientist-astronauts was a doctorate in medicine, engineering, or a natural science such as physics, chemistry or biology.
So, What Does It Take to Be an Astronaut?
Astronaut requirements have changed with NASA’s goals and missions. A pilot’s license and engineering experience is still one route a person could take to becoming an astronaut, but it’s no longer the only one. Today, to be considered for an astronaut position, U.S. citizens must meet the following qualifications:
- A bachelor’s degree in engineering, biological science, physical science, computer science or mathematics.
- At least three years of related professional experience obtained after degree completion OR at least 1,000 hours pilot-in-command time on jet aircraft.
- The ability to pass the NASA long-duration astronaut physical. Distant and near visual acuity must be correctable to 20/20 for each eye. The use of glasses is acceptable.
Astronaut candidates must also have skills in leadership, teamwork and communications.
NASA’s Astronaut Selection Board reviews the applications (a record-breaking 18,300 in 2016) and assesses each candidate’s qualifications. The board then invites about 120 of the most highly qualified candidates to NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas, for interviews. Of those interviewed, about half are invited back for a second round. Once the final astronauts are selected, they must complete a two-year training period.
With NASA’s plans for the future of exploration, new astronauts will fly farther into space than ever before on lunar missions and may be the first to fly on to Mars.
El Morro National Monument
Barboza Space Center News: We have just returned from our summer New Mexico geology field trip. We are always looking to compare and contract Earth and Mars. We invite you to visit our most recent photo essay below. In addition, we are paving the way for our 2018 Barboza Space Center Tiger Teams from Australia, South Korea and Cabo Verde. We visited the El Malpas National Monument to continue our studies of volcanoes in New Mexico and Cabo Verde. Plans are underway to study Mars from New Mexico. You can follow our programs by visiting www.BarbozaSpaceCenter.com
|El Morro National Monument|
IUCN category V (protected landscape/seascape)
|Location||Cibola County, New Mexico, USA|
|Nearest city||El Morro, New Mexico|
|Area||1,278.72 acres (5.1748 km2)
1,039.92 acres (420.84 ha) federal
|Created||December 8, 1906|
|Visitors||59,422 (in 2016)|
|Governing body||National Park Service|
|Website||El Morro National Monument|
El Morro National Monument
|Area||221 acres (89 ha)|
|NRHP Reference #||66000043|
|Added to NRHP||October 15, 1966|
|Designated NMSRCP||May 21, 1971|
El Morro National Monument is located on an ancient east-west trail in western New Mexico. The main feature of this National Monument is a great sandstone promontory with a pool of water at its base.
As a shaded oasis in the western U.S. desert, this site has seen many centuries of travelers. The remains of a mesa top pueblo are atop the promontory where between about 1275 to 1350 AD, up to 1500 people lived in this 875 room pueblo. The Spaniard explorers called it El Morro (The Headland). The Zuni Indians call it “A’ts’ina” (Place of writings on the rock). Anglo-Americans called it Inscription Rock. Travelers left signatures, names, dates, and stories of their treks. While some of the inscriptions are fading, there are still many that can be seen today, some dating to the 17th century. Among the Anglo-American emigrants who left their names there in 1858 were several members of the Rose-Baley Party, including Leonard Rose and John Udell. Some petroglyphs and carvings were made by the Ancestral Puebloan centuries before Europeans started making their mark. In 1906, U.S. federal law prohibited further carving.
The many inscriptions, water pool, pueblo ruins, and top of the promontory are all accessible via park trails.