Crew Selection Procedures
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Just like there is more than one way to get to Mars, there are several ways to do the
research necessary to get to Mars. Holistic mission simulations, as
done during the past field seasons at FMARS and MDRS, are missions of discovery,
rather than missions of investigation. These scenarios have allowed
research on human factors issues and habitat systems design, but despite science
objectives having been directed towards EVA field work, little planning or
coordination of geological and biological investigations has occurred.
On Devon Island with the Haughton-Mars Project, the research program has been
very good at studying certain kinds of questions, including Mars analog science,
science operations, and exploration research, but the HMP does not intend
to integrate the tasks involved in each discipline into an entire mission
scenario. The goal of this expedition is to try a third way blending
the best aspects of the other two methods, and to go beyond them by discovering
what benefits a strongly coordinated set of focused missions of investigations
might provide for increasing the fidelity of mission simulations. The
first step is to define the individual tasks or phases of a mission, and
then develop a mission scenario.
During our expedition, we will be experimenting with crew selection and mission
support, but more importantly on EVA field operations and field science.
The primary focus will be to identify the field science tasks that are needed
to be accomplished during a mission, narrow those down to what is practical,
and then integrate them into a holistic simulation.
thinking is that science EVAs on Mars will be performed every other day at
most, with days between for planning, analysis, and reporting, and habitat
systems maintenance. For the Expedition we will divide responsibilities
between a Field Research Crew and a Mission Systems Crew. That means
for every EVA we do during the expedition, we can consider it the equivalent
of two days on Mars. With four EVAs per day, in some respects (like
science return) one day on the Expedition become equivalent to one week of
a holistic mission simulation. Our 30-day Expedition gathers us about
the same information in EVA field work as a 30-week simulation, or 240 days
on Mars. If a Mars mission is on the order of 500 days, then after
our Expedition we will have a good idea about how much can be accomplished
during a long surface stay.
One overall, long-term question will be to:
1) Define the nature of a fully realistic holistic simulation in order to:
(a) Learn how to accomplish the selection, training and support of a crew that will actually go to Mars.
(b) Integrate the tasks necessary to accomplish the mission, and to
(c) Design an appropriate and effective working environment.
The goal of the Expedition One is develop at least one Integrated Mission
Science Scenario that would be the basis for understanding what work needs
to be accomplished during a fully holistic simulation, and by extension, an
actual science mission conducted by humans on Mars. Studies will be
devoted to: understanding how much time must be spent scouting new terrain
and what strategies are best to do so; understanding basic EVA science instruments,
tools and technologies that will most effectively aid the mission; understanding
of science operations so that research goals in a Martian environment may
be met; understanding of the science questions to be pursued on Mars; and
understanding of the human factors and logistical issues required to integrate
these lessons into a complete science mission scenario. Applicants
who make the first cut for the Field Research Crew are expected to define
research plans and strategies for answering these questions. Research proposals
in these areas will help the applicant pass the first cut.
Another long-term question has the goal of:
2) Evaluating the two competing classes (the 30-day quick-return
Earth-Mars orbital opposition class versus the 500-day long-surface-stay
Earth-Mars orbital conjunction class) of human missions to Mars in terms
of possible scientific return.
By examining how long it takes to
do individual tasks, and scaling appropriately, we can get a conception of
how much and what kinds of work may be done during each of a 30-day and 500-day
missions. Integrating tasks into complete mission scenarios for each
of 30-day and 500-day human Mars missions will allow these mission types
to be compared, contrasted and understood.
3) How long (in EVA time) will it take to reconnoitre the
exploration circle surrounding a base? What observations need to be
made; what samples need to be obtained? Field geology begins with mapping.
For Mars we will have maps of topographic and mineral data. Studies
of reconnaissance strategies should involve the
(a) Confirmation of theories of the local geology,
(b) Investigations of curious or anomalous data, and
(c) Attempts to locate useful resources.
Phase 1 and 2 morning scouting EVAs will focus on answering these questions.
The above questions will be investigated during the Expedition, though not
completely answered. Other questions that may be investigated are listed
on the Research Proposals
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