March 11th, 2019
Sol 15: Trial and Error
We installed the LOAC back to its location, along with the weather station, and a strongest attachment method. The EVA was a remake of the second EVA of the mission : same team, same goal. After an afternoon in the Hab, the VR experiment took me to wonderful landscapes and mountains of China. That was a visual refreshment for me ! Today, Aurélien also received his first astronomy results since a few days thanks to the end of the wind episode : a nice picture of the Pleiades.
This mission confirms that in space, long preparation is needed, but that it’s impossible to predict all the events. The road to space is full of difficulties, of obstacles, of errors. And problems are always easier to solve when they’re detected before leaving the Earth. We faced issues with the TELEOP experiment, which wasn’t lucky at all this year : a lost (or stolen) eye tracker at the airport, connection issues on the rover, a broken computer charger. The weather was hard on our outdoors experiments (LOAC and Weather station). We prepared ourselves during one year for this mission but reality is very different from what we thought. We had to adapt everything in order to continue the mission and get results for science. We repaired the weather station to put it back in place, we make changes on protocols to save the physic version of TELEOP. And in the end, no experiment has been canceled !
The first step on Mars will be the result of years of work of peoples : researchers, engineers, scientists who dedicated their life to improve science and technology and help humanity to reach another planet. These persons are the one that faced fails and that tried the most to make discoveries, while the rest of the world will only see the final result and success. Errors are not the end, but more steps to find the truth.
Author : Benjamin Auzou, Journalist