SpSt Students off to "Mars"!
Seven UND Space Studies graduate students will spend two weeks "on Mars" in 2014. The students are forming part of two UND crews at the Mars Desert Research Station (MDRS), which is a Mars Society-run project to do space analog research in the Utah desert. Most of them will be on site in January.
The facilities include a habitat, greenhouse, observatory and space suits for crew members to participate in simulated "spacewalks" or extra vehicular-activity (EVA). UND's missions will build on more than a decade of experience at this station and help contribute to the society's mission of facilitating Mars exploration.
UND's rotation duties will include conducting individual research projects (and assisting fellow crew members with their own projects), participating in ongoing, season-long research projects conducted by off-station researches, and duties related to each crew member's positions. Each crew member will also do an EVA at least every other day using provided spacesuits.
The students participating, and their principal duties, are:
- Paula Crock, commander
- Joshua Borchardt, biologist
- Pedro Diaz-Rubin, astronomer
- Elizabeth Howell, journalist
- Gordon Gartrelle, executive officer
- Joseph Jessup, geologist and engineer
- John Paul Jones - GreenHab greenhouse officer (in May 2014)