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A Long Range Mobile Exploration
Mars Analog Expedition

In the Red Desert of Arkaroola, Australia

Geology, Biology, Technology, Operations and Human Factors Research
Concerning Human-Crewed Rover Expeditions


Website Additions

September 18, 2004

Photos for August 2nd to 15th are now uploaded. The remainder of the photos will take time and effort to prepare and upload, so keep checking for new Photo Albums under the Daily Journal indices, or go directly to the Photo Index here.


EXPEDITION TWO CONCLUDES

August 29, 2004 - Adelaide, Australia

The final members of the crew of Expedition Two returned safely home today after an adventurous time in the outback in Arkaroola, South Australia. Among the accomplishments of the ExTwo crew were:

Please see our journals, photo albums and research reports from the links above.


EXPEDITION TWO LAUNCHES

August 2, 2004 - Arkaroola, Australia

The Expeditioners launched ExTwo today, beginning a four week research program in the outback on Australia. The Mars Society of Australia, Mars Society of Canada, and Mars Expedition Research Council would like to thank all our many sponsors and supporters. Please visit the Crew Journals and Research Reports links to follow our progress. Internet connection is limited to once per week, so expect updates by the end of each weekend of the expedition.


RED PLANET MEETS RED CENTRE: SCIENTISTS CONDUCT MARS RESEARCH DOWN-UNDER

Adelaide, Australia, July 26, 2004

An Adelaide space conference this weekend is the prelude to a month-long expedition in the Australian Outback, organised by Mars Society Australia and its international counterparts.

Many of the speakers at the Fourth Australian Mars Exploration Conference 2004 (AMEC), to be held at the School of Natural and Built Environments, University of South Australia on 31 July-1 August, are shortly to be participants in Expedition Two, and will provide delegates with an overview of their Mars-related research, covering diverse disciplines such as geology, astro-biology, psychology/human factors, biomedicine, engineering and robotics.

Keynote speaker at AMEC 2004 will be Mr Neal Newman, (NASA representative to Australia and South-East Asia), presenting ‘A New Vision for U.S. Space Exploration’.

Other speakers include:

"There will be a lot of excitement at this year's conference," says Expedition Two leader Dr. Jonathan Clarke, a director of Mars Society Australia. "AMEC will form the leadup to the departure of crew members on Expedition Two, to take place between August 2-29, 2004, and those attending the conference can meet many of these expeditioners and find out first-hand what they plan to do in the Outback and why this is such a unique place to carry out Mars-related research.

"Expedition Two will involve a wide range of research projects within an approximately two hundred kilometre radius of Arkaroola in the northern Flinders Ranges of the Australian Outback. It is the second in a series of fifteen expeditions to Mars-like or ‘analogue’ locations here on Earth. The goal of the expeditions is to develop strategies and technologies that will support a successful future human Mars mission.

"There will be four main themes to the expedition: collecting baseline environmental data on the field area, carrying out Mars-mission related engineering analogue research, human factors studies, and publicity with respect to the human exploration of Mars.

"Expedition Two will culminate in the selection of the precise site in the Arkaroola area for the construction of MARS-OZ, one of the four Mars Analogue Research Stations planned worldwide. It will also lay the groundwork for future expeditions and research by Mars Society Australia in the Arkaroola region."

Previous expeditions run by Mars Society Australia in the Red Centre (Jarntimarra-1) and Utah (Expedition One) in conjunction with the Mars Society of Canada and the Mars Society in the United States led to extensive media coverage and a heightened profile for the organisations involved, individual expeditioners, and sponsors. It is therefore hoped that Expedition Two will provide an excellent platform for public education and outreach, as well as meeting the rigorous science and engineering goals of the Society.

The purpose of the Mars Society, a world-wide non-profit organisation, is to further the goal of the exploration and settlement of the Red Planet, through lobbying, outreach and conducting Mars exploration on a private basis.

Says Jonathan Clarke, "Organising the expedition has taken the best part of the last eighteen months and has been a true collaborative effort between local Mars Society members and our international colleagues. We couldn't have done it without the generous support of our sponsors, which include the Canadian Space Agency, LandRover Australia, Australian Geographic magazine, Skins apparel, Boblbee backpacks, the Australian National University, the Arkaroola Wilderness Sanctuary and Hire Intelligence."

"Project funds, including cash grants and in-kind donations, now total approximately $50,000. This effort stands us in good stead to raise the subtantial funding we need to construct and operate the Australian Mars Research Station (MARS-OZ) in the Arkaroola region, which we estimate at approximately $1 million."

Guy Murphy, President of Mars Society Australia, urges all space enthusiasts based in Adelaide to come along to the conference and be enthralled by some of the experts in the field.

"We have deliberately kept the cost of the conference low to make AMEC affordable and accessible by as many members of the public as possible. Registration can be done online at http://www.marssociety.org.au or register on the day at the University of South Australia in North Terrace, Adelaide. Mars has hit the headlines this year, with the various rover missions reaching the surface, and this is a great opportunity to hear the latest on work being carried out to send people to Mars this century."

Rocky Persaud, Vice President of Mars Society Canada and Program Manager for the Mars Expedition Research Council, describes the purpose of the expeditions. "To prepare for a Martian expedition led by a human crew and assisted by robots, a substantial amount of mission definition can emerge from Mars analog studies on Earth. A series of human Mars expeditions will rely on exploration strategies, human factors solutions, and technologies developed and tested at Mars analog bases where real field science is practised.

"An international, interdisciplinary research program into field operations, exploration technology, information management, habitability issues, mission support options, and crew social-psychology is needed to integrate all the components necessary for a successful expedition. We need to do these analogue expeditions here on Earth, if the space agencies of the world are going to learn how to plan a future human Mars expedition that achieves its goals as effectively as possible."

Crews will travel around parts of the South Australian Outback in 4WD vehicles donated by LandRover and camp in remote areas, liaising with the base crew at the Arkaroola Wilderness Sanctuary by satellite phone. Each week or phase will involve a different locality, with the weekends serving as a rest and relaxation period and for crew changeover. Approximately 30 people will take part in the expedition over a period of a month, with 15 people departing Adelaide for the first phase.

Expeditioners will leave central Adelaide early on Monday morning (2 August) on the journey to Arkaroola and radio, press and TV interviews will be possible before departure and during the Expedition.

Information on Expedition Two can be found at http://expedition-mars.org

For interviews with members of the crew or speakers at AMEC, please contact Jennifer Laing on 0417 135 113 or email pr@marssociety.org.au


July 5, 2004

CANADIAN SPACE AGENCY AWARDS $20K CONTRACT TO MARS SOCIETY CANADA FOR ITS SECOND RESEARCH EXPEDITION

Toronto, Ontario, July 5, 2004 — The Canadian Space Agency has awarded a contract valued at $20,000 to contribute its support to the Mars Expedition Analog Program conducted by the Mars Society of Canada. Expedition Two will be launched this August in the red desert of Australia. It is the second of a long term series of expeditions using scientists, engineers, and a wide variety of supporting personnel engaged in interdisciplinary studies in Mars analog environments and situations. This program is managed by the international Mars Expedition Research Council, which has selected Mars Society Canada and Mars Society Australia to host Expedition Two. As a co-host, Mars Society Canada welcomes the Canadian Space Agency's contribution and thanks the agency for its support. This contribution brings the project funds, including cash grants and in-kind donations, to approximately $50k.

Read more here.

Contact: Reyna Jenkyns or Rocky Persaud
Mars Society Canada
P.O. Box 19015
360-A Bloor Street West
Toronto, Ontario M5S 1X0
info@marssociety.ca
http://marssociety.ca


June 7, 2004

Expeditioners please see the Crew Resources page for forms, list, waivers, and links to photos, maps and presentations.


May 2, 2004

Plans are proceeding with Expedition Two. MERC has evaluated the research proposals, and the ExTwo leaders have selected the crew.

A new website is currently undergoing development by web designers at MiraCosta College in San Diego, California. We should be unveiling the new website shortly before ExTwo begins. The new design will allow for ease of posting of daily expedition reports and photos, and be quite slick in itself.

On the promotional front, several crewmembers of Expedition One continue to give interviews. See our Press Clippings.


January 4, 2004

Expedition Two is a go! The Mars Expedition Research Council is taking proposals for research from invited scientists and engineers. In the future we may do a general public call for proposals. Jonathan Clarke of Mars Society Australia is overall project manager on behalf of the Mars Expedition Research Council

The Expedition Two leaders are privately announcing a call for proposals among select researchers for participation in Expedition Two. Here is the summary document about the expedition. Current dates for the project are August 2nd to 30th of 2004, which is relatively firm, however this may be changed to slide a few weeks into September if the ISU collaboration does not go ahead. Crew selection will be finalized by end of February.

Each vehicle will carry 4 people, so we will probably aim to seat a team of a geologist, a biologist, an engineer and a human factors researcher / research assistant per vehicle.

We will definitely lean towards people with strong research proposals. Invitations have been sent out to many people not on the ExOne crew.

Rocky Persaud will be managing the science program, helping the team integrate the research beyond individual projects to an overal program. "I'm particularly interested in producing papers on the operational characteristics of long range rover-based scientific exploration of a Mars analog environment."

"We are interested in studies concerning geology, geophysics, biology, social-psychology and other human factors, exploration operations, field reconnaissance strategies and exploration technology. I will assume research conducted for ExOne may be continued on ExTwo, and no further proposal would be necessary (as long as you tell me so), unless you need to update the proposal."

Deadline for expression of interest from invited researchers: January 17th.

Deadline for updates for previous proposals: January 31st.

Deadline for new proposals: February 29th.

As proposals come in, we'll ask those on the MERC oversight commitee to help with the research review according to their expertise and the criteria below.

Research Proposals

Each research proposal will be assessed by our scientific committee and a general score will be attributed. Only the proposals that meet our criteria will be selected. In the future, once the expedition is complete, a summary paper of the complete science program will be published. Parts of your proposal submission will be used to create the summary paper, and you will get co-author credit. Therefore, proposals should be written to publication quality.

Format (2-4 pages)

Proposal should include:

  1. Proposal Abstract - 250 words maximum.
  2. Short literature review
  3. problem statement
  4. methodology
  5. proposed analyses.
  6. Reference citations should be included

Merit Review

The scientific merit of each proposal will be evaluated by a multidisciplinary peer review panel.

Criteria:

Some images of the research area may be found here.


October 22, 2003

Members of the crew of Expedition One, led by Commander / Principal Investigator Rocky Persaud, has formed the Expedition Research Council to plan the long term course of action for the Mars Society Canada - Mars Society Australia series of Mars Analog expeditions. A news website to host the council's plans and report on progress for its missions is located at www.expedition-mars.org. Many world experts in Mars analog studies have agreed to sit on the council's oversight committee.


May 20, 2003

The crew is hard at work analyzing the data from Expedition One. Papers are being written in response to the following announcement.

-- Call for Papers "Martian Expedition Planning"

American Astronautical Society / British Interplanetary Society

Deadline: June 30th 2003

Papers are requested for an AAS/BIS book entitled "Martian Expedition Planning" to be published in late 2003. The papers can discuss any aspect of the planning of surface activities on Mars from mountaineering to the exploration of Martian deserts. Papers can cover human factors, logistics and science. The book takes as its starting point a base on Mars and considers how expeditions would be planned to the various different terrains and environments of Mars. The book will be a continuation of the highly successful "Case for Mars" Series and will be available early next year.

Those interested in submitting papers for this volume are asked to contact Charles Cockell at .


May 5, 2003

Expedition Two is going ahead! The Mars Society of Australia have obtained 1/3rd of of the funding required for a mission next year in Australia from the magazine Australian Geographic.


Expedition-Mars.org is owned by Mars Society of Canada, Inc.

Expedition Two Sponsors


School of Pyschology


PIRSA Minerals

and Private Individuals