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Commander Report


Prepared by Chelsea Iwig

Today started off as a normal one for Crew 131. This morning the crew was able to sleep in a little as it was not an exercise day. They eventually all emerged from their rooms; although, some arose later than others as a few crewmembers have been waking up in the middle of the night to either turn on the water pump or submit pictures from the previous day that they are not able to upload during the day due to internet bandwidth issues. However, once they were all up, they sat down together for a delicious breakfast of chocolate chip pancakes before EVA Team 2 headed downstairs to begin preparing for their EVA.

            Today’s EVA was a much easier and shorter one than those in the past as the crew did not have to do any climbing or walking up steep inclines. Nevertheless, they were not necessarily looking forward to it because they assumed that the views would not be as spectacular since the topographical map showed very few elevation changes. However, they could not have been more wrong. The walk to their destination was mostly unremarkable, but when they had reached their destination, they looked ahead and noticed that there appeared to be a gorge just a little beyond their current position. So they continued to press forward despite the extensive helmet fogging and the tiredness in their legs. When they finally reached the ledge of the gorge they were definitely glad that they had kept going. The view was amazing and they were able to point out several interesting looking spots that would be good destinations for future EVAs. They sat and enjoyed the view for a few minutes before turning back to the Hab. They wished they could have explored more, but it would have to wait until the next EVA as they were all exhausted from lack of sleep over the past few nights.

            When EVA team 2 returned from their EVA, they collapsed in their beds for a couple minutes before getting back to work on their research and other activities. Today, the last crewmember completed the first phase in the space suit glove testing. Tomorrow will mark the beginning of phase two for which each crewmember will complete a whole new set of fine motor activities to test their dexterity with the gloves on. Once the glove testing for the day was complete, they had a new assignment to complete. Today, they would need to put a video together to send back to Earth. This video would tell people about Crew 131 and the research we are conducting on the Red Planet. The crew is currently finishing this video for submission later tonight. This task ended up taking much longer than originally anticipated as a few crewmembers were a little camera shy and some needed multiple takes to complete their portion of the video without breaking out in laughter. In the end, we definitely ended up with more bloopers than actual usable footage, but it was definitely a fun activity for the whole crew.

            The rest of the evening will be spent finishing the video, submitting reports, and completing surveys. The crew will hit the hay early tonight as tomorrow will be a busy day full of research and cleaning in preparation of the arrival of some media guests who will be visiting Crew 131 on Monday