March 12th, 2019
Sol 16: The Power of Experience
Our Association has been sending crew to the MDRS for five years. MDRS 151, 164, 175, 189 and 206 are a ‘succession’ of experiences given each year to the new members. 22 French aeronautics and aerospace engineering students from ISAE-SUPAERO have worked hard to forge our knowledge about Martian simulations. At first, two veterans were part of the next crew with a shared leadership. Our crew is commanded by Jérémy, former GreenHab Officer. To continue the partnership with the MDRS and as we had this year in our association more than 30 applications for 2020 missions, the Station Director agreed to receive two French crews. The whole crew is still undergraduate and next year will be in internship or universities all around the world. Two of us will command these crews but we can’t know yet who it will be. This is why the entire crew is trained to be commander. Everyone is taking in charge some communication windows, leading EVA’s, participating to the writing of the mission report and leading scientific experiments. Moreover, the whole crew is discussing about roles so that each member of the crew is aware of the basic knowledge of every role to be able to train the following crews.
That’s what our crews are based on: experience. The members of the crews are selected, formed and advised by members of the previous missions. This allows us to have a good knowledge of the MDRS fundamentals and to deploy scientific experiments over the years. For example the aerosol counter (LOAC) analyzed the air of the desert in 2018 and in 2019 as well as the rover driving experiment ‘TELEOP’. We developed an app to help the leader of an EVA to take notes and follow protocols (created by Louis Mangin, Commander of crew 189 and improved by Gaspard, our crew engineer). And next year we will continue to work on improvement of our monitoring, but also take new experiments to the MDRS with two crews composed of talented and curious students from ISAE-SUPAERO. If you want to follow the preparation of the future missions of our association: call for projects, experiments, presentation of the crews, you can visit our Twitter account @MDRSSupaeroCrew.
This week we continued to film moments of life and science to prepare the mission video. This video will be ready a few days after the end of the mission. What we are living for three weeks is incredible and the result of our year of preparation, and we are eager to share what we achieved with our relatives and all the people that follow our adventure. Here on Mars, our role is mainly scientific, but back on Earth our role will be more about popularizing our analog mission to children, to our friends, to our families. These are the two goals of our association, the Club MARS from ISAE-SUPAERO : science for space and link with the public.
Author : Benjamin Auzou, Journalist